Washingtonblade.com, Volume 48, Issue 48, December 1, 2017

Page 1







Will Kennedy remain an ally in Masterpiece case? All eyes on swing justice as oral arguments arrive next week By CHRIS JOHNSON cjohnson@washblade.com When the U.S. Supreme Court hears oral arguments in the Masterpiece Cakeshop case on Tuesday, all eyes will be on U.S. Associate Justice Anthony Kennedy to ascertain whether the court will uphold Colorado law in the face of a First Amendment challenge that could enable the denial of services to LGBT people not just in that state, but throughout the country. After all, Kennedy is the swing vote and

will be asked to uphold LGBT rights yet again after a long career advancing them on the bench as the author of several milestone decisions: the 2003 ruling in Lawrence v. Texas, striking down state sodomy laws; the 2013 ruling in Windsor v. United States against the anti-gay Defense of Marriage Act; and the 2015 ruling for marriage equality nationwide in Obergefell v. Hodges. But there’s an earlier decision on LGBT rights written by Kennedy, the 1996 decision in Romer v. Evans striking down Colorado’s Amendment 2, which may also weigh on Kennedy even though the legal principles at hand are different from the Masterpiece Cakeshop arguments. In 1996, the U.S. Supreme Court found Amendment 2, which barred the Colorado CONTINUES ON PAGE 15

Many observers predict Justice NEIL GORSUCH (right) will side with Masterpiece Cakeshop, but how will Justice ANTHONY KENNEDY rule?

Canada apologizes Trudeau ‘sorry’ for anti-LGBT laws and persecution By MICHAEL K. LAVERS mlavers@washblade.com

Canadian Prime Minister JUSTIN TRUDEAU on Nov. 28 apologized to those who suffered persecution and discrimination under the country’s anti-LGBT laws. PHOTO COURTESY OF YOUTUBE

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Tuesday apologized to those who suffered persecution and discrimination under the country’s anti-LGBT laws and policies. Trudeau — who spoke in the Canadian House of Commons — formally apologized to Canadians who were convicted of “gross indecency” before the country decriminalized

consensual same-sex sexual relations in 1969. He also announced the introduction of a bill that would expunge the criminal records of those who were prosecuted under the law. Trudeau formally apologized to those who were fired from the Royal Canadian Mounted Police and the country’s military and civil service because of their sexual orientation or gender identity. He also apologized Canadians who faced discrimination under anti-LGBT policies and regulations. “The number one job of any government is to keep its citizens safe,” said Trudeau. “And on CONTINUES ON PAGE 17




Armie quits Twitter after nasty article labels him ‘pedigreed white man.’

The epidemic continues; what it was like to lose a lover to the disease.

Our annual gift guide series continues with picks for the home.


PAGES 20 & 25


0 2 • DE CE MB ER 0 1, 2017


Travel with the BEST, we’ll do the rest! Free Wi-Fi Available Free Water for Everyone Electric Plugs Under Every Seat


D E CE MBE R 0 1 , 2 0 1 7 • 0 3


0 4 • DECE MB ER 0 1, 2017


Comings & Goings Olson honored by Clinton Global Initiative By PETER ROSENSTEIN The Comings & Goings column is about sharing the professional successes of our community. We want to recognize those landing new jobs, new clients for their business, joining boards of organizations and other achievements. Please share your successes with us at comingsandgoings@washblade.com. Congratulations to Ryan Ubuntu Olson named to the Clinton Global Initiative University Honor Roll. According to CGI, Ryan was “recognized at the 10th Annual CGI University Meeting in Boston, Mass., in October. The CGI U Honor Roll recognizes individuals dedicating their lives to taking on complex local and global challenges and finding new ways to make the world a better place. Ryan was recognized for his decade of work surrounding global LGBTI human rights.” RYAN UBUNTU OLSON President Bill Clinton launched CGI U in 2007 to PHOTO COURTESY OF OLSON engage the next generation of leaders on college campuses around the world. While recognizing Ryan and the other honorees President Clinton said, “Each of these alumni brings unique skills and experiences. Some have been working on this for almost as long as we’ve been having CGI U. We hope by letting you see them, and I hope you will learn about their commitments, but they really are admirable people because they’ve stayed at the task. In other words, being a social entrepreneur, being someone committed to the work we are STEPHEN BENNETT PHOTO COURTESY OF BENNETT doing here, is now an ordinary part of their lives. Whether they do it full time or part time, they do it all the time and that’s what the world needs. Every young person needs to make a commitment that in the 21st century, the definition of citizenship requires us all to do this kind of work.” Olson traveled to Kenya for his International Public Service Project developing LGBTI human rights training for CSOs, law enforcement officers, health care providers, and other LGBTI activists throughout the country. For his Capstone project, he worked for a non-governmental organization doing advocacy work at the United Nations in New York around LGBTI human rights protections. Since he graduated in 2011, he has been a Senior Associate for Health, HIV, and Gender and Sexual Diversity at Palladium Group. Recently he co-designed a gender and sexual diversity training program for the United States President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief that has been delivered to more than 3,000 staff as well as implementing partners in 39 countries. On receiving this award, Olson said, “To be recognized for the work I’ve dedicated my life to means more to me than anyone might be able to know. To be given a platform to discuss the importance of addressing gender and sexual diversity throughout the world alongside these global game changers was the real reward.” Congratulations also to Stephen Bennett who became vice chair of the board of Save the Chimps. Save the Chimps is a non-profit organization dedicated to providing permanent sanctuary for the lifelong care of chimpanzees rescued from research laboratories, the entertainment industry, and the pet trade. Many of us know Bennett from his other work. He is a board member of The California Endowment with a focus on improving the health of the citizens of California. He is a member of the board of the Arcus Foundation, whose work includes a focus on civil rights and social justice for the LGBTQI community in the U.S. and internationally. He was CEO of AIDS Project Los Angeles (APLA) where he was credited with saving the agency from bankruptcy and building a strong financial base that allowed him to build the nation’s second largest AIDS service provider with a strong, influential board. He established APLA as a national model for charitable events and public awareness.

Virginia state Del.-elect DANICA ROEM (D-Prince William County) celebrates her victory over state Del. Bob Marshall (R-Prince William County) on Nov. 7. The House of Delegates may end the tradition of using gender-specific titles to refer to lawmakers. WASHINGTON BLADE PHOTO BY MICHAEL KEY

Va. House may end use of gender-specific titles Roem schools GOP on why she won By MICHAEL K. LAVERS mlavers@washblade.com Virginia House Majority Leader M. Kirkland Cox (R-Colonial Heights) last week said he wants to stop the tradition of using gender-specific formal titles to refer to lawmakers if Republicans retain control of the state House of Delegates. Cox spokesperson Parker Slaybaugh told the Washington Post that House members would be referred to as “delegate” as opposed to the “gentleman” or “gentlewoman” from the jurisdiction in which they live. The announcement came two weeks after state Del.-elect Danica Roem (D-Prince William County) became the first openly transgender person elected to the General Assembly when she defeated state Del. Bob Marshall (R-Prince William County), a vocal opponent of LGBT rights. Marshall — who has represented the 13th District since 1992 — repeatedly attacked Roem’s gender identity and used male pronouns to identify Roem. The Post noted Roem referred to herself as “the gentlewoman” from Prince William County in one of her campaign ads. Slaybaugh told the Post that Cox “believes the ‘gentlelady’ and ‘gentleman’ terminology is outdated, and that referring to everyone as ‘delegate’ is more timely and appropriate.” Social conservatives have welcomed the proposed change, but state Del. David Toscano (D-Charlottesville) is among those who have criticized it. “I know the intent behind this wasn’t charitable toward me and I’m grateful our hopefully future Speaker (David) Toscano has my back,” wrote Roem on her Twitter page. “That said, I hope the unintended consequence of this will be non-binary Virginians feeling emboldened to run for office and win.” In a related development, Roem this week blasted Republican theories on why she won her race. Some Republicans have theorized that Roem’s win was due to identity politics but in a lengthy Twitter thread Roem argued that it was a strong platform that led to her victory. “Since the election, I’ve repeatedly heard these Republican talking points about why they lost, basically making Democratic voters out to be too dumb to vote Republican and caring too much about identity politics,” she wrote. “At risk of giving them good ideas, let me break this down.” She continued, “At the state level, y’all made a pediatrician who volunteers at a children’s hospice out to be a member of MS-13 and campaigned throughout the state on Confederate statues and fiscally reckless tax cuts your own state senators called BS. And you wonder why you lost?” She concluded with, “One more thing: Stop believing your own headlines. I knew beyond a shred of doubt we would win this race when y’all actually, sincerely thought based on a POS robo poll that 27 percent of Dems wouldn’t vote for me if they knew I’m trans. 1. Wrong. 2. Stop attacking trans people.”



D E CE MBE R 0 1 , 2 0 1 7 • 0 5

DentalBug.com Cosmetic, Implants, Sleep Apnea, Sedation CALL TODAY • WEEKEND HOURS • MULTILINGUAL

“We believe we can make the dental experience better.”

DentalBug Staff 2016-2017

Jeanette Suh DMD


Every story in the rainbow Stirring romances. Inspiring dramas. Uplifting biographies. Pride comes in many stories. XFINITY X1 is the first to provide a diverse, complete, community endorsed LGBTQ entertainment experience. Just say “Pride” or “LGBTQ” into the X1 Voice Remote to search this one-of-a-kind collection. With XFINITY X1, it’s Pride all year.SM

Maria Hodas DDS

John Tsaknis DDS

Indra Mustapha DDS, MS

1221 Mass. Ave, NW • 202.628.7979 • (Free Parking) 703 D Street, NW • 202.628.1288 L’Enfant Plaza,SW • Promenade #325 • 202.628.2177

Handyman Masters, LLC 20+ years Exp

I Am Jazz available at xfinity.com/stream

*Kitchens *Masonry

El Canto Del Colibri available on XFINITY Stream app

Discover more about the LGBTQ Film & TV Collection at xfinity.com/findyourself

*Bathrooms *Concrete

202-528-4600 HandymanMastersllc.com A+ Rated w/BBB 10+ years

Restrictions apply. Not available in all areas. © 2017 Comcast. All rights reserved.

Serving Our Community for 35 years


ISSUE DATE: 10.28.2016`

233 N. MICHIGAN AVE. SUITE 2900, CHICAGO, IL 60601, P:312.297.9600


adviCe • med



FILE NAME: CMCIN17011M8_7.25x8.5625_LGBTQ_CorpAd_v01.indd







Sean Devlin





9-18-2017 10:44 AM

FONTS: XFINITY Standard TT (Regular, Bold, Light, Bold Italic)



IMAGES: CST276_bkgnd_240NP.tif (CMYK; 448 ppi, 855 ppi; 66.94%, 35.07%),



CMCIN17011_103318_Rainbow_Woman_Q4_UI_EXT_FLAT_4C.tif (CMYK; 1039 ppi; FamiLY




REVIEW AD FOR COPY AND DESIGN ACCURACY. Revisions must be submitted within 24 hours of the date of if revision is not submitted i a t i o N • Lproof. i t Proof i G will a tbeiconsidered o N • final aand P Pwillebeasubmitted L S • forCpublication oLLa Bor at i o Nwithin 24 hours of the date of proof. Revisions will not be accepted after 12:01 pm wednesday, the week of publication.Brown naff pitts omnimedia llc (dba the washington blade) is not responsible for the content and/or design of your ad. Advertiser is responsible for any legal liability arising out of or relating to the advertisement, and/or any material to which users can link through the advertisement. Advertiser represents that its advertisement will not violate any criminal laws or any rgihts of third parties, including, but not limited to, such violations as infringement or misapporpriation of any copyright, patent, trademark, trade secret, music, image, or other proprietary or propety right, false advertising, unfair competition, defamation, invasion of privacy or rights of celebrity, violation of anti-discrimination law or regulation, any other right of any person or entity. Advertiser agrees to idemnify brown naff pitts omnimedia llc (dba the PROOFREADERor washington blade) and to hold brown naff pitts omnimedia llc (dba the washington blade) harmless from any and all liability, loss, damages, claims, or causes of action, including reasonable legal fees and expenses that may be incurred by brown naff pitts omnimedia llc, arising out of or related to advertiser’s breach of any of the foregoing representations STUDIO DIRECTORand warranties.



| eState PLaNNiNG | emPLoYmeNt | immiGratioN PRODUCTION ComPLeX LitiGatioN | CiviL riGHtS | LGBt | adoPtioN | BuSiNeSS 28.85%), Comcast_M_4C_COLOR_BLK.eps (6.83%), XFINITY_tag_v_r.ai (67.66%),


CMCIN17011_Pride_LGBTQ_TECH_L_TV_T_Remote.psd (CMYK; 511 ppi; 29.35%)


7.25” x 8.5625”


6.5” x 7.8125”





~ 202.319.8541 • www.lgbtc.com • Se habla espanol


Silber, Perlman, Sigman & Tilev, P.A. COPYWRITER


at tor N e YS at L aw • d C | m d | va

3 0 1 . 8 9 1 . 2 2 0 0 • S P - L aw. C o m CREATIVE DIRECTOR

6930 Carr o L LMANAGER av e , S u i t e 6 1 0 • ta k o m a Pa r k m d ACCOUNT


By s wash paym


0 6 • DECE MB ER 0 1, 2017


D.C. Police Chief PETER NEWSHAM offered to meet with a trans activist but was turned down. WASHINGTON BLADE PHOTO BY MICHAEL KEY

Trans protester declined offer to meet with police chief Trans activist Ashley Love, who staged a one-person protest at D.C.’s Transgender Day of Remembrance event Nov. 20 in which she demanded that Police Chief Peter Newsham leave the event, declined an offer by Newsham to meet with her to discuss her concerns about the police. According to D.C. Police Lt. Brett Parson, Newsham asked him to approach Love after the TDOR event ended at the Metropolitan Community Church of Washington to invite her to meet with Newsham. Parson said Love, in a strongly worded reply, turned down the offer. Parson oversees the department’s LGBT Liaison Unit. Love couldn’t immediately be reached this week for comment on Parson’s account of Newsham’s meeting invitation. With nearly 200 people looking on at the Trans Day of Remembrance event on Nov. 20, Love, who describes herself as a journalist and transsexual and intersex educator, began shouting at Newsham to get off the stage, saying the event was not a “prop for the police department.” After nearly 10 minutes of shouting back and forth between Love and attendees who demanded that she cease disrupting the event, Newsham walked off the stage and left the church through a back door. He did not return to deliver the remarks he was scheduled to make. Love argued that D.C. police along with police across the country have historically mistreated transgender people, especially trans women of color. She said D.C. police abuse of transgender people remains ongoing and police, especially Chief Newsham, should not be a part of the annual Transgender Day of Remembrance event. Taking strong exception to Love’s action was veteran transgender leader and activist Earline Budd, the lead organizer of D.C.’s Trans Day of Remembrance. Budd called on Love to leave the stage, saying D.C. police handling of trans issues had improved significantly in recent years. Budd said the committee in charge of organizing this year’s TDOR decided it was appropriate to invite Newsham to speak. D.C. police spokesperson Rachel Schaerr Reid told the Washington Blade in an email on Wednesday that the department would prefer not to comment further on Newsham’s offer to meet with Love. But Reid sent a copy of Newsham’s written “talking points” outlining what he planned to say before deciding to leave the event. “Ensuring MPD remains an inclusive environment for its employees and the communities it serves is among Chief Newsham’s highest priorities,” Reid said. “He’s always willing and eager to hear from residents who have suggestions on ways we can improve those relationships, making D.C. an even safer place to work and live,” she said. In his talking points, Newsham offered his “sincerest condolences” to the families and friends of transgender people who have lost their lives to violence. “Our goal at MPD will be to work tirelessly to support our transgender community particularly at times when you are most in need, and when others may have turned their backs,” he said. The full text of Chief Newsham’s statement on the Transgender Day of Remembrance that he intended to deliver follows: “First, I want to thank you for inviting me to share this important and solemn day with you.

“I think it’s critically important that I be here because I think my presence is symbolic of the progress that we have made in Washington, DC. “I am not so naïve as to believe that we still don’t have challenges, and I know that we still have a long way to go, but I do believe that in Washington, DC we are in a much better place than some other communities when it comes to our relationship with our LGBT community. “On a personal note, and on behalf of all of the men and women of the Metropolitan Police Department I want to express my sincerest condolences to the families and friends in our transgender community who have lost a loved one due to tragic and unnecessary violence in our country. “In Washington, DC we have been fortunate because we have not lost anyone from our transgender community to homicide this year. But it was not too long ago that we all felt the pain when friends like Deeniqua Dodd’s, Deoni Jones, Lashay Mclean and others had their lives tragically cut short. “We also must not forget that although we have been lucky in recent years; nationally transgender homicides are on the rise. “Lastly, I think it is important tonight that I share with you our goals as your police department. “Our goal at MPD will be to always try to be an ally, and a friend. Our goal at MPD will be to work tirelessly to support our transgender community particularly at times when you are most in need, and when others may have turned their backs. And, our goal at MPD will be to continue to promote DC values of inclusion, acceptance, support and most importantly equal treatment for all. “Thank you again for inviting me to this ceremony. May the souls of the departed rest in peace. And may God grant you the wisdom and courage you will need to get through this difficult time of loss. Thank you.” LOU CHIBBARO JR.

FreeState Justice has launched a fund that will provide free legal representation to low-income LGBT Marylanders who have suffered discrimination. WASHINGTON BLADE PHOTO BY CHRIS JENNINGS

FreeState Justice launches legal defense fund FreeState Justice has launched a legal defense fund to help low-income LGBT Marylanders who have faced discrimination. A press release that FreeState Justice released on Monday indicates the fund will “provide free legal representation to the LGBTQ community facing discrimination who could otherwise not afford it.” The press release also indicates Robert Meyerhoff and Rheda Becker — two Baltimore-area philanthropists who are longtime FreeState Justice supporters — provided a “generous contribution” to create the fund. “Unfortunately, we know from experience how vulnerable the community is to discrimination,” said FreeState Justice Managing Attorney Jennifer Kent. “The fund will allow us to fight for LGBTQ Marylanders who have experienced discrimination in areas like health care, housing, education, detention, and public accommodations.” Maryland law bans discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity. FreeState Justice in its press release said it has seen “an increase in requests for help” in 2017. It also notes lawyers who volunteer their time with the organization have worked on nearly 150 discrimination cases in the state this year. “The fund will allow FreeState to make more attorneys available, provide support in more communities across the state, and pay for clients’ filing fees and litigation expenses,” said FreeState Justice in its press release. MICHAEL K. LAVERS



D E CE MBE R 0 1 , 2 0 1 7 • 0 7

Faith in America joins forces with Clementi Foundation Officials say merger will boost fight against bullying By LOU CHIBBARO JR. lchibbaro@washblade.com Faith in America, a national group founded in 2006 to end what it says is the serious harm caused to LGBT people by religious-based prejudice, announced last month that it is “joining forces” with the Tyler Clementi Foundation, whose mission is to end anti-LGBT bullying. The announcement came at a Nov. 13 event in New York City hosted by the Clementi Foundation in which Faith in America’s co-founder and co-chair, gay businessman Mitchell Gold, said his organization’s “programs, staff, and resources” would be transferred to the Clementi Foundation. “This is why I joined the Tyler Clementi Foundation Board in September and, in partnership with Faith in America’s Board, have begun the process of closing down our operations as a separate nonprofit,” Gold told the November gathering.

JASON CIANCIOTTO was named new executive director of the Tyler Clementi Foundation. PHOTO COURTESY OF THE TYLER CLEMENTI FOUNDATION

Gold and Clementi Foundation officials, including its recently named executive director, Jason Cianciotto, said the merger would strengthen the foundation’s ability to carry out the mission of both groups by eliminating duplication of costs. “I want to thank the Faith in America and Tyler Clementi Foundation boards and staff for embracing this visionary plan to join

forces,” Gold said. “Now more than ever, as anti-LGBT religious fundamentalists have taken over our highest political offices, we must protect LGBTQ youth from the lifetime of harm caused by faith-based discrimination and rejection from their families and faith communities.” In a mission statement posted on its website, Faith in America says its goal has been to “end decades and centuries of using religious teachings to justify marginalizing and discriminating against others,” particularly LGBT youth. “Our dream is to change the hearts and minds of religious communities on the ‘sinful’ nature of homosexuality,” the statement says — “to remove it permanently from ‘the sin list.’” The Tyler Clementi Foundation was founded in 2011 in the year following the suicide of 18-year-old Rutgers University freshman Tyler Clementi, who was gay, triggering international news coverage of the then little discussed topic of antiLGBT bullying. Clementi, who was in the process of coming out as gay, became the target of his college roommate at the New Jersey-

based Rutgers University, who agreed to Clementi’s request to have use of their dorm room so he could be alone with a man for a date. According to accounts by Clementi’s family members and local law enforcement officials who investigated the incident, the roommate without Clementi’s knowledge placed a laptop with a camera in the room aimed at Clementi’s bed. With several of his friends watching, the roommate live-streamed Clementi having a sexual encounter with his male companion in what authorities at the university considered a gross violation of Clementi’s privacy. When Clementi discovered his intimate relations with his visitor had been viewed by others and that he became the subject of jokes and of what authorities considered a form of cyber bullying, he became depressed and despondent. A short time later he drove to the George Washington Bridge, which connects New Jersey and New York over the Hudson River, and jumped over the railing, taking his own life. � CONTINUES AT WASHINGTONBLADE.COM

Pentagon can’t delay trans enlistments past Jan. 1 In rebuke of Trump, judge says Mattis memo is lawful By CHRIS JOHNSON cjohnson@washblade.com In response to a request to clarify a court order against President Trump’s transgender military ban, a federal judge has ruled neither Trump, nor the Pentagon, may delay transgender enlistments any further than a Jan. 1 target date. U.S. District Judge Colleen KollarKotelly, a Clinton appointee, issued the clarification Monday in response to a request from the U.S. Justice Department in the case of Doe v. Trump, the initial lawsuit against the ban filed by the National Center for Lesbian Rights and GLBTQ Advocates & Defenders. The request from the Justice Department last week asserts KollarKotelly couldn’t have meant her order bars Defense Secretary James Mattis from extending his delay on transgender accessions beyond the Jan. 1 target date because plaintiffs “only sought prospective relief to enjoin the secretary from implementing the president’s memorandum,” which was a measure subsequent to Mattis’ memo. “Out of an abundance of caution, however, defendants now seek clarification that, should the secretary

of defense exercise such discretion, the secretary’s action would not violate the court’s Oct. 30, 2017, order,” the filing says. Mattis issued his memo on June 30 to delay transgender enlistments, which were set to begin at that time as result of a policy change during the Obama administration under Defense Secretary Ashton Carter, until Jan. 1 in response to a request from military service chiefs for more time to implement the policy. (Transgender people currently serving in the armed forces as a result of the Obama-era policy were allowed to stay.) Kollar-Kotelly explains her order intended to revert the military’s policy on transgender troops to the “status quo” before Trump issued his directive banning transgender military service, which means the Mattis memo is now lawful policy. To clarify on whether Mattis is free to extend the ban on transgender enlistments any further, Kollar-Kotelly writes “any action by any of the defendants that changes this status quo is preliminarily enjoined.” Since Mattis is named defendant in the case, that prohibits him from delaying transgender enlistments any longer than Jan. 1 — the target date in his June 30 memo. At that time, the Trump administration will be required to allow qualified transgender people to enlist in the armed forces. Shannon Minter, legal director for the

Defense Secretary JAMES MATTIS issued a memo on June 30 to delay transgender enlistments. PHOTO COURTESY OF US DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE

National Center for Lesbian Rights, said the clarification confirms “transgender people must be permitted to enlist on Jan. 1, 2018, as previously scheduled.” “We are very pleased that Judge Kollar-Kotelly confirmed her prior ruling and that transgender people who can meet the same qualifications as others will be eligible to enlist,” Minter said. “As the court has already determined, there is no justification for excluding transgender people from military service. The order applies to the president and to military officials.”

The Justice Department has already appealed Kollar-Kotelly’s order — the first against Trump’s transgender military ban — to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit. Last week, U.S. District Judge Marvin Garbis issued a second order against Trump’s policy as a result of a separate lawsuit filed by the American Civil Liberties Union. The two lawsuits are among four lawsuits filed against Trump’s transgender military ban. Another was filed by Lambda Legal and OutServe-SLDN, and another was filed by Equality California.

0 8 • DE CE MB ER 0 1, 2017




D E CE MBE R 0 1 , 2 0 1 7 • 0 9

IT’S ABOUT WHETHER A BUSINESS CAN SAY “WE DON’T SERVE YOUR KIND HERE.” In early December, the Supreme Court will hear oral arguments in Masterpiece Cakeshop, a case that has the potential to upend the hard-fought principle that no one should ever be denied service from a business open to the public simply because of who they are. The case might seem relatively minor: a Colorado bakery refusing to sell a same-sex couple a cake for their wedding reception. But this is not about cake, and it’s about a lot more than marriage. A ruling that says the Constitution gives businesses the right to turn customers away based on religious beliefs or creativity would create gaping holes in our nation’s longstanding nondiscrimination protections. It would say there is a constitutional right to discriminate—which could be used not only against LGBT people but also against religious and racial minorities, unmarried couples, single mothers and many, many others.

To learn more go to www.OpenToAll.com


National Center for




1 0 • DECE MB ER 0 1, 2017

U.S. agency urges law against LGBT workplace bias Commission on Civil Rights details history of anti-LGBT discrimination By CHRIS JOHNSON cjohnson@washblade.com An independent, bipartisan U.S. agency was set to deliver to President Trump on Wednesday a report calling on Congress to “immediately enact a federal law” against anti-LGBT workplace discrimination, although lawmakers are unlikely to act any time soon given the current makeup of Congress and the long history of stalling on the issue. The U.S. Commission on Civil Rights details in the 154-page report the history of discrimination against LGBT people and the lack of non-discrimination A protest demanding nondiscrimination protections for LGBT protections for LGBT people in federal law, citing a workers in May 2010. 2015 hearing the agency held on the issue. WASHINGTON BLADE FILE PHOTO BY MICHAEL KEY “LGBT individuals often face lower wages, increased difficulty in finding jobs, promotion denials, and/or job terminations due to their sexual orientation or gender identity,” the report says. “Studies have found that anywhere from 21 to 47 percent of LGBT adults faced employment discrimination because they were gay or transgender.” Twenty states and D.C., the report notes, have laws barring anti-LGBT employment discrimination and a growing number of courts are interpreting the prohibition on sex discrimination under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 to apply to LGBT people. The U.S. Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals, the report notes, this year became the first federal appeals court to determine sexual orientation discrimination in the workplace amounts to sex discrimination under current federal law. But the report concludes these measures are insufficient in comparison to an explicit federal non-discrimination law barring anti-LGBT discrimination in the workforce. “Some federal courts have concluded that the existing federal statutory protection against discrimination based on sex, under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, includes within its protection discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity,” the report says. “Other federal courts have disagreed. These inconsistent interpretations result in different protections available to individuals based on their jurisdiction, and it is not clear when the Supreme Court will resolve the dispute.” Efforts to enact LGBT non-discrimination protections in federal law have stalled for decades. In years past, LGBT advocates have sought to pursue federal nondiscrimination protections through passage of the Employment Non-Discrimination Act. But since 2014, the Equality Act, which would amend the Civil Rights Act of 1964 to ensure more comprehensive protections for LGBT people, has been the chosen vehicle. The report has five recommendations: Congress should “immediately enact a federal law” barring anti-LGBT discrimination in the workforce; U.S. agencies should issue guidance and policies outlining protections for LGBT workers, specifically transgender people; Congress should appropriate funds necessary to enforce civil rights laws; the religious exemption in any LGBT non-discrimination law should be the same as exemptions in existing civil rights law; and federal agencies, such as the U.S. census, should collect data on anti-LGBT workplace discrimination. The United States Commission on Civil Rights is comprised of eight individuals who serve six-year terms: Four are appointed by the president, and four by Congress. The current chair is Catherine Lhamon, who was appointed by Obama and served during his administration as assistant secretary for civil rights at the Education Department. No Trump appointees serve on the commission. The conclusions in the report aren’t unanimous. One of the congressionally appointed commissioners, Gail Heriot, a law professor at University of San Diego, disagrees with its conclusions. Another commissioner also appointed by Congress, Peter Kirsanow, a partner at Benesch, Friedlander, Coplan & Arnoff, argues LGBT issues aren’t within the commission’s jurisdiction. The letter of transmittal indicates the report will be sent to Trump, Vice President Mike Pence, House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell

NATIONAL NEWS (R-Ky.). The Washington Blade sent a request for comment on report to the White House as well as Ryan and McConnell’s offices. In 2000, Trump said in an interview with The Advocate he supports amending the Civil Rights Act of 1964 to include sexual orientation. But Trump has never addressed whether he still supports that idea during his presidential campaign or his presidency, nor whether he’d also support amending the law to include transgender people. Meanwhile, Trump’s administration has been hostile to LGBT workplace rights. The U.S. Justice Department has argued Title VII of the Civil Rights Act doesn’t apply to gay workers and rescinded an Obama-era memo asserting the law prohibits anti-trans discrimination.

Armie Hammer leaves Twitter over Buzzfeed attack Armie Hammer has deleted his Twitter account after a BuzzFeed article chalked up his success to being “a beautiful, pedigreed white man.” Senior Buzzfeed culture writer Anne Helen Petersen penned the article titled “Ten Long Years of Trying to Make Armie Hammer Happen,” which analyzes why Hammer’s career has supposedly A story in Buzzfeed described floundered and spotlights his prestigious ARMIE HAMMER as ‘a beautiful, background as the great-grandson of an oil tycoon. pedigreed white man.’ “He’s gone on to star in failed Westerns, spy PHOTO BY GAGE SKIDMORE; remakes, fantasies, and historical epics,” Petersen COURTESY OF WIKIMEDIA COMMONS writes. “His blockbusters flop; his prestige pictures fall flat. ‘The Lone Ranger’ was one of Disney’s greatest summer bombs of all time. Plans to make ‘The Man from U.N.C.L.E.’ into a sprawling franchise disappeared. His attempt to redirect his career with ‘The Birth of a Nation’ faded from Oscar favorite to a blip on the awards season radar.” Petersen notes that Hammer has been given opportunities that aren’t offered to actresses or actors of color. “Yet he and his publicity team have never given up trying to Make Armie Hammer Happen. This year, they are spinning out a publicity campaign around his role in the likely Oscar contender ‘Call Me by Your Name’ that attempts to retroactively reinterpret his choices, his failures, and his career,” Petersen writes. “How many second chances does a handsome white male star get?” Hammer responded to the article tweeting, “Your chronology is spot on but your perspective is bitter af. Maybe I’m just a guy who loves his job and refuses to do anything but what he loves to do.” The actor deleted his Twitter account shortly after. MARIAH COOPER

Former Olympic swimmer Mark Foster comes out Former Olympic swimmer Mark Foster has come out as gay in an interview with the Guardian. Foster, 47, has broken eight world records and won six World Championship titles. He swam for Great Britain five times in the Olympic Games. He tells the Guardian that he’s been out in his personal life and has dated men for 26 years. However, coming out publicly was nerve-wracking. “I was a bit nervous today but I kept busy,” Foster says. “I was tidying the house for you [he laughs]. I was a little apprehensive but years ago I would have been fearful of how I would be judged. Maybe that’s me being older and having a long time to get used to the idea.” At 30, he says he revealed his sexuality to a fellow swimmer during a drunken night. “I was training in Germany with my mate Neil Willey and Therese Alshammar, one of the most decorated swimmers of all time. We shared a flat and every Saturday night we’d go out. Once, pissed in this nightclub, I was dancing close to Therese. Neil sat at the bar giving me this look of thunder because he was seeing her. I went over and he said: ‘What are you doing so close to Therese?’ I said: ‘Mate, you’ve got nothing to worry about. I’m gay.’ He went: ‘Oh!’ My shield was down because I was pissed and felt comfortable sharing it with him and Therese,” Foster says. Foster decided to share his sexuality with the world after the death of his father and during a break from his long-term partner. MARIAH COOPER


D E CE MBE R 0 1 , 2 0 1 7 • 1 1


Take an active role in your health. Ask your doctor if an HIV medicine made by Gilead is right for you.

onepillchoices.com GILEAD and the GILEAD Logo are trademarks of Gilead Sciences, Inc. © 2017 Gilead Sciences, Inc. All rights reserved. UNBC4606 06/17


1 2 • DE CE MB ER 0 1, 2017

Zimbabwe activists celebrate Mugabe’s resignation Robert Mugabe on Tuesday resigned as president of Zimbabwe He submitted his resignation — which took effect immediately — less than a week after the country’s military placed him under house arrest. The military moved against Mugabe after he fired Vice President Emmerson Mnangagwa in an apparent attempt to allow his wife, Grace Mugabe, to succeed him. Members of the Zimbabwe African National Union-Patriotic Front or ZANUPF on Sunday voted to remove Robert Mugabe as their party leader. ZANU-PF ROBERT MUGABE on Nov. 21 resigned members also expelled Grace Mugabe as president of Zimbabwe. LGBT rights advocates in the country have celebrated his from the party. resignation. Robert Mugabe remained defiant in a speech he gave on Zimbabwean television on Sunday, even though ZANUPF said lawmakers would seek to remove him from office if he didn’t resign by 12 p.m. local time on Monday. The Zimbabwean Parliament on Tuesday began impeachment proceedings against Robert Mugabe before he resigned. Robert Mugabe, 93, ruled Zimbabwe since the country’s independence from the U.K. in 1980. His government has frequently targeted LGBT activists, opposition leaders and other groups. Robert Mugabe in 1995 described gays and lesbians as “dogs and pigs.” He said in a 2013 speech he gave in the city of Masvingo said gay men and lesbians “should rot in jail.” Robert Mugabe in the same year told supporters in another speech that authorities should arrest gay men and lesbians who don’t conceive children. Robert Mugabe also criticized the Anglican Church for blessing same-sex marriage and then-President Obama over his support of the issue. Robert Mugabe has described homosexuality as “inhuman.” Robert Mugabe in a 2014 speech that marked Zimbabwe’s independence from the U.K. threatened to expel foreign diplomats who promote LGBT rights in the country. More than 30 people were injured in 2014 when a group of men attacked an LGBT rights organization’s end-of-the-year party. Zimbabwe is among the dozens of countries in which consensual same-sex sexual acts remain criminalized. Zimbabwean LGBT rights advocates are among those who celebrated Robert Mugabe’s resignation. “GALZ receives the news of the resignation of Robert Mugabe with much jubilation,” said GALZ, an LGBT and intersex advocacy group that is based in the Zimbabwean capital of Harare, in a statement. “Since 1995 GALZ has been on the receiving end of the brutality and hate of Robert Mugabe’s aversion to diversity. We are ecstatic that the face of brutality, hate and impunity has resigned.” Ricky “Ricki” Nathanson of the Trans Research, Education, Advocacy and Training (TREAT) program spoke with the Washington Blade from the city of Bulawayo after Robert Mugabe resigned. “It is with such relief and joy to hear of the resignation of the ex-president of Zimbabwe, Robert Gabriel Mugabe,” said Nathanson. “When he took over, we thought that it would usher in a new independent country. But that independence was only experienced in certain areas and not across the board.” “Certainly members of the LGBTI community felt the brunt of his homophobia as evidenced by his outspokenness on them,” added Nathanson. “His ‘pigs and dogs’ speech has gone down in history at his intolerance of this marginalized population.” Mnangagwa is expected to be Zimbabwe’s interim president until elections take place in 2018. “We only hope that the new leadership coming in can address his many wrongs,” Nathanson told the Blade, referring to Robert Mugabe. “It’s early days yet, but we live in hope.” Jeffrey Smith, executive director of Vanguard Africa, a D.C.-based organization that promotes democracy and human rights in Africa, described Robert Mugabe’s resignation to the Blade as a “tremendous opportunity for the people of Zimbabwe to finally, after decades of callous misrule and brutality, to reclaim their country.” Smith also echoed Nathanson’s optimism about Zimbabwe’s future. “Tough and challenging days surely lie ahead,” Smith told the Blade. “But my experience working in the country and working with activists over the years tells me that Zimbabweans are surely up to the task.” MICHAEL K. LAVERS


Chilean lawmakers debate marriage rights Chilean lawmakers this week began to debate a bill that would extend marriage rights to same-sex couples. Members of the Chilean Senate’s Constitution, Legislation and Justice Commission began to consider the measure nearly three months after President Michelle Bachelet introduced it. She signed the country’s civil unions law that took effect in October 2015. ROLANDO JIMÉNEZ, president of The Movement for Homosexual the Movement for Homosexual Integration and Liberation, a Chilean LGBT Integration and Liberation, a Chilean LGBT advocacy group, in his office in advocacy group, in 2012 filed a lawsuit Santiago, Chile, on Oct. 2. with the Inter-American Commission on WASHINGTON BLADE PHOTO BY MICHAEL K. LAVERS Human Rights on behalf of three same-sex couples who are seeking marriage rights in the country. Bachelet’s government agreed to introduce a bill that would extend marriage and adoption rights to same-sex couples as part of an agreement it reached with the Movement for Homosexual Integration and Liberation in June 2016. Rolando Jiménez, president of the Movement for Homosexual Integration and Liberation, told the Washington Blade last month during an interview at his office in the Chilean capital of Santiago that up to 70 percent of Chileans support same-sex marriage. He nevertheless added there is “still no absolute majority support for marriage equality.” Former President Sebastián Piñera, who won the first-round of Chile’s presidential election that took place on Nov. 19 opposes same-sex marriage. He will face off against Alejandro Guillier — a candidate for Bachelet’s center-left Nueva Mayoría coalition who supports same-sex marriage — in the Dec. 17 runoff. More than 60 of the 155 candidates who were elected to the Congress on Nov. 19 are members of the Nueva Mayoría or the left-wing Frente Amplio party. The Movement for Homosexual Integration and Liberation and Fundación Iguales, another Chilean advocacy group, applauded the results and noted the majority of the Congress now supports marriage rights for same-sex couples and a bill that would allow transgender adults to legally change their name and gender without undergoing surgery or going before a judge. “Marriage equality is effectively egalitarian,” Fundación Iguales President Juan Enrique Pi told the Blade last month during an interview at his Santiago office. “We can get married. We can adopt.” More than 100,000 people marched in support of the same-sex marriage and trans rights bill in Santiago on Saturday. Guillier, U.S. Ambassador to Chile Carol Pérez and Chilean Social Development Minister Marco Barraza are among those who took part in the march. Piñera did not attend. The U.S. Embassy in Chile on its Twitter page posted a picture that shows Pérez marching with other diplomats who were holding a banner that read, “diplomats committed to LGBTI human rights” and speaking to march participants. The embassy also thanked the Movement for Homosexual Integration and Liberation for organizing the event. “A great space to keep promoting LGBTI rights,” it wrote. MICHAEL K. LAVERS

Australia Senate approves marriage bill The Australian Senate has approved a bill that would extend marriage rights to same-sex couples. Lawmakers approved the measure by a 43-12 vote margin. The Australian House of Representatives will now consider the bill. The vote took place less than a month after the Australian Bureau of Statistics announced the majority of voters who took part in a non-binding plebiscite on whether same-sex couples should be able to legally marry in the country said “yes.” Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has urged lawmakers to pass the marriage bill by Christmas. “Next week it heads to the House of Representatives,” said the Equality Campaign, a group that supports the marriage bill, on its Twitter page. “It’s time for our MPs to get this done.” MICHAEL K. LAVERS


D E CE MBE R 0 1 , 2 0 1 7 • 1 3

1 4 • DE CE MB ER 0 1, 2017


Everything on Sale



Cady’s Alley 3328 M Street NW Washington, DC 20007


Tysons Galleria 1825 Galleria at Tysons II 3rd Floor McLean, VA 22102





D E CE MBE R 0 1 , 2 0 1 7 • 1 5

All eyes on Kennedy as Masterpiece case begins CONTINUED FROM PAGE 01

Legislature or municipalities from enacting pro-gay non-discrimination ordinances, violated the Equal Protection Clause of the U.S. Constitution. The Romer decision paved the way for Colorado to bar anti-LGBT discrimination in its anti-discrimination law. Now, 21 years after the ruling, anti-LGBT forces in the Masterpiece Cakeshop case are seeking a First Amendment right to refuse to make wedding cakes for samesex couples despite the statute. The petitioner in the case, Jack Phillips in Masterpiece Cakeshop, argues that making a wedding cake is inherently an artistic act of expression protected under the First Amendment, therefore he should be able to deny wedding cakes out of religious objections to same-sex couples like Charlie Craig and David Mullins, who sought to buy a cake for their wedding in 2012. Both the Romer and Masterpiece Cakeshop cases originated in Colorado. While the Romer case asked the court whether the state could deny nondiscrimination protections to LGBT people with Amendment 2, the Masterpiece Cakeshop case asks whether the First Amendment takes precedence over LGBT protections in a way that undermines the the Romer decision. Jean Dubofksy, who successfully argued the Romer case in 1996 and is now a law professor at University of Colorado, Boulder, said a decision in favor of Masterpiece Cakeshop “would really undo the decision in Romer” because that ruling enabled Colorado to add sexual orientation to its public accommodations law. “If you make an exemption to a person who says, ‘Well, I’m not going to provide rental housing, or I’m not going to provide various kinds of services, whether they’re medical services or grocery stores or whatever to a person because I don’t believe in gay marriage,’ then all of a sudden all of those protections are undone, and so if I were Justice Kennedy, I think I’d be concerned about that,” Dubofksy said. One friend-of-the-court brief before the Supreme Court filed by the New Yorkbased Kaplan & Company, LLP, on behalf of legal scholars on the separation of church and state cites the Romer decision in a section arguing a ruling for Masterpiece Cakeshop on First Amendment grounds would have no limiting principle. “In another instructive case from Colorado, this Court rejected an effort to single out gays and lesbians for exclusion,” the brief says. “It would be peculiar for the same court that decided Romer to hold now that Colorado uniquely lacks the power to protect gays and lesbians in public accommodations. Petitioner’s rule must therefore be seen as a general

theory that arises from the context of gay rights but would sweep much further.” Joshua Matz, an attorney for Kaplan & Company, LLP, and former clerk for Kennedy, said Romer becomes relevant in the pending case before the Supreme Court because justices held in 1996 gay people can’t be singled out for discrimination. “It would be strange if the same court that said in another case from Colorado were now to say that you can’t do that as a matter of your state constitution, but as a matter of the federal constitution, in fact, you can single out gay people and deny them rights either under the Free Exercise Clause or under the Free Speech Clause, but it turns out that that principle doesn’t apply anywhere else,” Matz said. “It would be the total inverse of Romer in a way that would really make no sense.” LGBT rights advocates have argued a decision in favor of Masterpiece Cakeshop would result in sweeping discrimination not just for same-sex couples seeking wedding cakes, but LGBT people seeking a range of services — and perhaps other individuals who could face discrimination based on race or religion. The Center for American Progress published an issue brief one week before the Masterpiece Cakeshop arguments titled, “The Harms of Refusing Service to LGBTQ People and Other Marginalized Communities,” which outlines the potential harms if the Supreme Court ruled in favor of Phillips. “In reality, service refusals act like a one-two punch,” the brief says. “The discrimination itself causes harm that negatively affects both psychological and physical health and well-being, as shown by research and lived experiences of LGBTQ people and their families. Then, compounding that harm, the refusal can make it harder or impossible for LGBTQ people to access services at all, denying them full participation in the public square.” Citing data from a January 2017 Center for American Progress report, the issue brief says in the event of being turned away from a retailer, a significant minority of LGBT people would have difficulty finding an alternative. One in five said it would be “very difficult” or “not possible” to find the same type of service at a different retail store selling wedding attire, while in one in 10 said the same about finding the same type of service at a different bakery or florist. The difficulty is compounded for LGBT people living in non-metropolitan areas. Four in 10 non-metro LGBT people said it would be “very difficult” or “not possible” to find the same type of service at a different retail store selling wedding attire, three in 10 non-metro LGBT people said the same about finding the same type of service at a different bakery and one in five said the same about finding service at a different florist.

CHARLIE CRAIG and DAVID MULLINS are at the center of the Masterpiece Cakeshop case. PHOTO COURTESY OF THE ACLU

The attorney for the American Civil Liberties Union representing the samesex couple in the Masterpiece Cakeshop case, David Cole, may hit on this potential impact on LGBT people during oral arguments, as could Colorado Solicitor General Frederick Richard Yarger, who’s representing the state. Meanwhile, Kristen Waggoner, the attorney for the anti-LGBT legal firm Alliance Defending Freedom, will rely on primacy of the First Amendment. U.S. Solicitor General Noel Francisco, who was granted time to speak by the Supreme Court, will also likely make similar arguments. Determining whether Kennedy will seek to mitigate this kind of discrimination or side with Masterpiece Cakeshop is difficult. In addition to being the author of gay rights decisions, Kennedy has also ruled in favor of expansive views of the First Amendment, such as the 2010 decision in Citizens United that ruled campaign finance laws limiting contributions are unconstitutional because those activities amount to speech. Moreover, Kennedy’s decision may determine the outcome of the case if the four liberal justices — Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Stephen Breyer, Sonia Sotomayor and Elena Kagan — side with the Colorado law and the four conservatives justices — Clarence Thomas, Samuel Alito, John Roberts and Neil Gorsuch — side with Masterpiece Cakeshop. Dubofksy said she thinks Kennedy may vote to uphold Colorado’s AntiDiscrimination Law because other First Amendment libertarians “of whom Justice Kennedy apparently is particularly drawn to have stated baking a wedding cake amounts to conduct, not speech, as shown in a recent Washington Post article. “It’s saying that wedding-cake makers are conducting themselves,” Dubofksy said. “That’s conduct, it’s not expression, and so, you draw the line at a wedding photographer who’s doing an expressive activity and a maker of a cake who isn’t required to be at the wedding and is really just making a cake.” Additionally, Dubofksy predicted Kennedy will seek to uphold the Colorado

law because he’ll want to uphold the impact of the Romer decision. “There’s a good reason to be worried, but I’m not sure the court will take that sweeping of an approach because it would cut back on the sexual orientation discrimination cases in a way that could completely undermine Romer,” Dubofksy said. “I don’t see that happening.” Walter Olson, a senior fellow at the Cato Institute’s Robert Levy Center for Constitutional Studies, said Kennedy may be in conflict in the case because of the history of rulings for gay rights and the First Amendment. “He is on the one hand the great architect of the gay rights decision, but at the very same time, he is a very important justice on First Amendment issues, on both free speech and the role of religious liberty and religious conscience have also been very important to Justice Kennedy,” Olson said. Olson, whose organization has filed a friend-of-the-court brief on behalf of Masterpiece Cakeshop, said Kennedy may lead the court to a “center territory” other than a sweeping ruling one way or the other. “Neither side wants to inflict a culture war on the country; they’re trying to work out something without culture war,” Olson said. “That’s why it won’t surprise me if the court comes up with something a little muddled and a little bit hard to read because certainly Kennedy personally, and I think the court generally is trying to reach the center ground here.” Matz said despite his history with Kennedy he doesn’t know which way the justice will rule, but also noted there are other ways the court could decide other than in favor of the Colorado law or a sweeping ruling for Masterpiece Cakeshop. “If the court is going to rule for the baker, it could just rule for the baker and if its ruling has these extraordinarily disruptive and chaotic implications, it could simply refuse to address them and leave them for the future, which is often how the court does this,” Matz said. As an example, Matz cited the ruling the Hobby Lobby case — a decision Kennedy joined that closely held for-profit companies need not comply with the contraception mandate under Obamacare under the Religious Freedom Restoration Act. “Justice Alito’s majority opinion essentially said, ‘Well, under the Religious Freedom Restoration Act, preventing racial discrimination is always super compelling, but we’re not going to tell you in advance whether anything else is,” Matz said. “You can imagine the court doing something like that, which I don’t think would be prudent and would, in fact, unleash enormous uncertainty and confusion, and could harm not just gay people, but many others, but the Supreme Court doesn’t always tell you in advance how far it will allow its principles to go.”

1 6 • DE CE MB ER 0 1, 2017


Keep your promise to protect each other.

Apply for Discounts on Your Utility Bills Discounts are Subject to Income Eligibility Requirements

- Apply for Discounted Rates on Telephone


Lifeline Program (Economy II)

Annual discount on one land line service per household.

Natural Gas

Wills & Trusts Powers of Attorney • Living Wills Partnership & Prenuptial Agreements

Residential Essential Service (RES) Program

Potential savings up to $276 during the winter heating season.

(240) 778-2330 • (703) 536-0220 www.PartnerPlanning.com

Residential Aid Discount (RAD) Program

Potential savings are between $300-$475 annually.


Customer Assistance Program (CAP)

Potential discount could be over $450 annually.

For more info call 311 or visit doee.dc.gov/udp

Serving the LGBT Community in DC/MD/VA since 1983

To apply for the telephone Lifeline Service (Economy II), call 800-253-0846. These programs are for DC residents only.

Lawrence S. Jacobs/McMillan Metro, PC

Your Flooring Professionals since 1985 MHIC #41515

prep for all occasions The PrEP Clinic at Andromeda can help you decide if PrEP is right for you. .tsal seilppus elihw stcudorp llA* .sliated dna noitceles rof erots eeS .tcudorp eht fo noitatneserper tcaxe eb ton yam dna ylno sesoprup noitartsulli rof era nwohs segami tcudorP*

For a limited time ONLY!

40% off * ADVERTISING ISSUE DATE: 10.26.12




*Product images shown are for illustration purposes only and may not be exact representation of the product. See store for selection and details. *All products while supplies last.


REVIEW AD FOR COPY AND DESIGN ACCURACY. Revisions must be submitted within 24 hours of the date of proof. Proof will be considered final and will be submitted for publication if revision is not submitted within 24 hours of the date of proof. Revisions will not be accepted after 12:01 pm wednesday, the week of publication.Brown naff pitts omnimedia llc (dba the washington blade) is not responsible for the content and/or design of your ad. Advertiser is responsible for any legal liability arising out of or relating to the advertisement, and/or any material to which users can link through the advertisement. Advertiser represents that its advertisement will not violate any criminal laws or any rgihts of third parties, including, but not limited to, such violations as infringement or misapporpriation of any copyright, patent, trademark, trade secret, music, image, or other proprietary or propety right, false advertising, unfair competition, defamation, invasion of privacy or rights of celebrity, violation of anti-discrimination law or regulation, or any other right of any person or entity. Advertiser agrees to idemnify brown naff pitts omnimedia llc (dba the washington blade) and to hold brown naff pitts omnimedia llc (dba the washington blade) harmless from any and all By signing this proof you are agreeing to your contract obligations with the liability, loss, damages, claims, or causes of action, including reasonable legal fees and expenses that may be incurred washington blade newspaper. This includes but is not limited to placement, by brown naff pitts omnimedia llc, arising out of or related to advertiser’s breach of any of the foregoing representations payment and insertion schedule. and warranties. 202.743.7942 • www.andromedaprep.org • 1400 decatur Street nw • waShington, dc 20011 (Next


N. Bethesda


5268 Nicholson Ln.

13380 Mid Atlantic Blvd.

to Shoppers & HomeGoods)

(Rt. 1 & Contee Rd.)

(301) 881-0969

(301) 206-2200


Aspen Hill


20650 Seneca Meadows Pkwy.

13629 Connecticut Ave

8221 Gateway Overlook Dr.

(Next to Wegmans)

(Aspen Hill Shopping Center)

(Next to Costco)

(301) 528-6400

(301) 460-4100

(410) 872-1129


Carpet | Hardwood | Ceramic | Laminate | Vinyl | Stair Rails | Fireplace Surrounds | Sand & Finish | Bathroom Remodeling



D E CE MBE R 0 1 , 2 0 1 7 • 1 7

Canada apologizes for anti-LGBT persecution CONTINUED FROM PAGE 01

this, we have failed LGBTQ2 people, time and time again.” “It is with shame and sorrow and deep regret for the things we have done that I stand here today and say: We were wrong,” he added. “We apologize. I am sorry. We are sorry.” Trudeau in his speech also said the Canadian government has agreed to settle a class-action lawsuit filed by those who were forced out of the country’s military and civil service because of their sexual orientation. The Globe and Mail newspaper reported those who were victims of the anti-gay purge will receive payments of between $3,900-$117,150 ($5,000-$150,000 Canadian dollars.) Denis LeBlanc, a retired LGBT and HIV/ AIDS activist who lives in Ottawa, told the Washington Blade that he feels “so proud.” “Canada’s prime minister’s sincere historic apology was 30 minutes in the House of Commons and it was deeply moving,” he

said. “Well worth the half hour to listen.” Canada is the latest country to formally apologize to men who were convicted under laws that criminalized homosexuality. A law named after Alan Turing — a gay British mathematician who was convicted of gross indecency in 1952 for having a relationship with another man — that pardoned gay and bisexual men in England and Wales who were charged under a law that criminalized consensual same-sex sexual acts took effect earlier this year. Germany and other countries have also taken similar actions. Then-Secretary of State John Kerry in January formally apologized to State Department personnel who were fired for “alleged homosexuality” during the so-called “lavender scare” of the 1950s and 1960s. U.S. Sen. Ben Cardin (DMd.) has introduced a bill that would allow those who were fired during the “lavender scare” to have their employment records expunged. “I sincerely hope that, some day, an

American president will issue a similar apology to gays and trans people in the USA,” LeBlanc told the Blade. More than 70 countries around the world continue to criminalize homosexuality. Iran, Saudi Arabia and Mauritania are among the handful of nations in which those who are convicted of engaging in consensual same-sex sexual acts face the death penalty. Discrimination and violence based on sexual orientation and gender identity remains pervasive throughout many parts of the world. Trudeau in his speech noted Canada earlier this year added gender identity and gender expression to the country’s nondiscrimination and hate crimes laws. He nevertheless said trans Canadians, LGBT youth and people with HIV/AIDS continue to face discrimination and violence in the country. “We want to be a partner and ally to LGBTQ2 Canadians in the years going forward,” said Trudeau. “There are still

Canadian Prime Minister JUSTIN TRUDEAU apologized to LGBT citizens for past persecution. WASHINGTON BLADE PHOTO BY MICHAEL KEY

real struggles facing these communities, including for those who are intersex, queer people of color, and others who suffer from intersectional discrimination.”

State Dept. reiterates concern over Egypt anti-LGBT crackdown Court sentences 16 men convicted of ‘debauchery’ By MICHAEL K. LAVERS mlavers@washblade.com The State Department on Tuesday once again expressed concern over the ongoing anti-LGBT crackdown in Egypt. Al-Ahram, a newspaper the Egyptian government owns, reported 13 men who were convicted of “debauchery” and “forming a network for homosexual acts” received suspended sentences of three years in prison and were fined $281.69 (5,000 Egyptian pounds) on Sunday. Three additional men who were found guilty of the same charges received identical sentences on Tuesday. Al-Ahram reported police raided an apartment near Cairo’s Ramses Square in September and arrested several men who were in “indecent positions.” The newspaper said prosecutors alleged those who were arrested “had solicited other men for sex in return for money.” “The defendants denied being homosexuals,” reported al-Ahram. “The prosecution ordered that the suspects be subjected to medical examinations to determine if they had committed homosexual acts.” Al-Ahram reported the 16 men have been released on bail and can appeal their sentences.

Secretary of State REX TILLERSON speaks at the Wilson Center on Nov. 28. It remains unclear whether he has raised the ongoing anti-LGBT crackdown in Egypt with his counterpart in the country. WASHINGTON BLADE PHOTO BY TOM HAUSMAN

The men were sentenced more than two months after authorities arrested at least seven people who waived a rainbow flag during a Cairo concert that featured Mashrou’ Leila, a Lebanese rock band. Al-Ahram said “a number of young men who had frequented” the apartment that was raided in September raised the flag at the concert.

Amnesty International and the Human Rights Campaign have said dozens of LGBT Egyptians have been arrested since September. The introduction of a bill in the Egyptian Parliament that would criminalize the country’s LGBT community sparked outrage around the world. State Department spokesperson

Heather Nauert told the Blade last month the U.S. is “concerned by reports of detentions and arrests of LGBTI persons in Egypt.” A State Department official reiterated this point on Tuesday. “We are concerned by reports of arrests of LGBTI persons in Egypt,” the official told the Blade. House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) on Nov. 1 urged Egyptian House of Representatives Speaker Ali Abdel Aal Sayyed Ahmed to publicly condemn the criminalization bill and the broader antiLGBT crackdown. President Trump has yet to publicly comment on the crackdown. The State Department official with whom the Blade spoke on Tuesday did not say whether Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has specifically raised it with the Egyptian government. “We urge countries to uphold and respect their international human rights obligations and commitments,” said the official. “The United States will continue to engage on issues of universal human rights and democracy.” The 16 men convicted of “debauchery” and “forming a network for homosexual acts” were sentenced days after militants with an affiliate of the so-called Islamic State killed 305 people at a mosque in Bir al-Abed, a town that is located in the northern Sinai Peninsula. The massacre is the deadliest terrorist attack in modern Egyptian history.



DE C E M B E R 01, 2017 • 21

Europe grapples with blood donation laws LONDON — England has relaxed its blood donation policy for men who have sex with men while Switzerland holds to its ban, a series of events arriving just before World AIDS Day (Friday, Dec. 1). Gay men in the U.K. will be allowed to donate blood three months after having sex instead of a year under new rules coming into force today, the Daily Mail reports. Fears over infections being passed on through donations from gay men led to an outright ban at the height of the AIDS epidemic but that was cut to 12 months in 2011. Medical advances mean the time limit is reduced further after England joined Wales and Scotland in passing the legislation earlier this year. “We have one of the safest blood supplies in the world,” said Dr. Gail Miflin, medical and research director at NHS Blood and Transplant. “Anyone may require a blood transfusion in the future and so it’s in all our interests to ensure that we work hard to keep blood safe for patients.” He said a pre-donation questionnaire is crucial to keeping the blood supply safe. Switzerland’s Parliament this week, however, overturned a decision its House of Representatives had previously passed that would have allowed men who have sex with men to donate after being sexually abstinent for 12 months, Swiss Info reports. That would have been in line with neighboring countries such as France, Germany in England as well as the United States and Australia, but the country’s Senate rejected it.

Educated at Brown, Harvard, and Johns Hopkins Washingtonian Magazine Top Doc US News & World Report Top 1% of Doctors in USA Dual Board Certified: Facial Plastic Surgery Body Plastic Surgery

Delay gaps shortening for HIV diagnoses CHICAGO — Delays in the time between becoming infected with HIV and getting a diagnosis are shortening, helped by efforts to increase testing for the virus that causes AIDS, U.S. health officials said according to Reuters. The report, released online Nov. 28 by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, found that 50 percent of the 39,720 people diagnosed with HIV in 2015 had been infected for at least three years, a seven-month improvement compared with 2011, Reuters reports. Nevertheless, 25 percent of people diagnosed with HIV in 2015 were infected for seven years or more before being diagnosed, Reuters reports. CDC Director Dr. Brenda Fitzgerald said the report shows the nation is making progress in the fight against HIV, but the gains are uneven, and challenges remain. “Too many people have HIV infections that go undiagnosed for far too long,” Fitzgerald said in a conference call with reporters, according to Reuters. Shortening the time between HIV infection and diagnosis is key to prevention. The CDC estimates that about 40 percent of new HIV infections are caused by people who did not know they were infected. Although testing rates increased overall, an estimated 15 percent of people living with HIV in 2015 did not know they were infected, and half of people who were unaware of their infection in 2015 lived in the South, Reuters reports. The report found many other disparities, with delays in diagnosis varying significantly by race/ethnicity and gender. For example, the estimated time from HIV infection to diagnosis was a median of five years for straight men, twice as long as straight women. The median was three years for gay and bisexual men, Reuters reports.

Canada issues new HIV prevention guidelines TORONTO — New medication guidelines in Canada recommend that people at high risk of contracting HIV take new drugs both before and after virus exposure, EurekAlert reports. The new strategy, published Monday in the Canadian Medical Association Journal, recommends the combination of PrEP (a pre-exposure prohylaxis drug) and nPEP (a non-occupational post-exposure prophylaxis) as a highly effective way of preventing HIV infection. “There are new biomedical HIV prevention strategies that have been widely endorsed worldwide by organizations including the WHO, U.S. CDC and others,” the study’s lead author, Darrell Tan, told EurekAlert. “In particular, PrEP is a highly effective and safe Health Canada-approved method that involves taking a daily pill, which, if taken properly, can offer almost 100 percent protection against new HIV infection.” The drug intervention is to be used alongside other protection, such as condoms, to prevent contracting HIV, according to EurekAlert.

• • • • • • • •

Laser Liposuction Pec and Ab Etching Facial Rejuvenation Gynecomastia Laser Hair Removal Botox & Skin Care Transgender Surgeries Ultherapy



2 2 • DE CE MB ER 0 1, 2017







AIDS at 37 remains a scourge Still a major killer, with 1 million dying last year By MICHAEL WEINSTEIN AIDS is about to turn 37 — it approaches middle age. Still a major killer — more than one million people died of AIDS last year. But tamed in comparison to its youth: 1.8 million new infections this year, down from three million 10 years ago. Nevertheless, since more people are becoming newly infected than are dying, the epidemic is still growing. In commemoration of its 30th anniversary, AIDS Healthcare Foundation produced a film, ‘Keeping the Promise.’ Watching archival footage reminds us of just how far we have come in the battle against AIDS and how horrifying those early years were. So, when we “celebrate” World AIDS Day on Dec. 1, there is a lot to be thankful for. A disease having its own “holiday” may seem odd, yet it is more important than ever that we remember everyone we have lost as well as the people who need our help today: the 20 million people who remain untreated for HIV, as well as preventing another generation from becoming infected with this still deadly disease. As a child of a lower middle-class family, I remember how my father would always talk about living through The Great Depression. As a kid who wanted a toy or a treat of some kind, I really didn’t want to hear about the struggles of my father’s childhood. Likewise, talking to millennials about the ravages of AIDS in the 80s and 90s may leave them cold or even sound like a scold. So, forgive me for saying that AIDS remains one of the defining issues of our time and reminding you that those who do not learn from history are

MICHAEL WEINSTEIN is president of AIDS Healthcare Foundation. PHOTO BY KAREN OCAMB

doomed to repeat it. A cure or a vaccine for HIV is not yet on the horizon. Despite tens of billions of dollars and decades of work, there is no tangible progress toward a magic bullet that will stop all new infections and rid HIV from the bodies of those who have it. The best news is that people who receive treatment and whose virus is under control are rendered non-infectious to others. Treatments for HIV have never been better. One pill, once-a-day is now the norm, with lower side effects and toxicities; however, HIV treatment still means taking medication every day for a lifetime. But these lifesaving treatments are still beyond the reach of most people living with HIV in the world. People living in poor countries in many instances must travel long distances, wait for a long time and cannot access the best drugs. At this moment of maximum hope, AIDS is no longer front-page news and donors are E DIT OR IA L C A R T OON

cutting back on their funding. Prevention of HIV hasn’t changed much from the beginning. Yes, there is Truvada for PrEP. But adherence is spotty and the people taking it are not the ones most at risk — youth and men of color. And once again, it is a pill taken every day and there are side effects. Whether we like them or not, condoms remain the best defense against HIV. Sometimes we forget that HIV is an STD. It is transmitted the same way that chlamydia or gonorrhea is spread, through the exchange of bodily fluids during sex. The spread of HIV took off in the 80s because we did not heed the warnings about using condoms and reducing the number of sexual partners we had. Today the number of STD cases is exploding. Apps are the digital bathhouses of our time: a closed network of people in a limited geography facilitate the rapid spread of infections. Yet little is being done about STDs at the government or community level. The more STD infections go up, the less funding is available to test and treat them. Community organizations run irresponsible campaigns that urge people to “fuck without fear.” We are headed over the falls in a barrel. Gonorrhea is becoming resistant to all the current medications to treat it. Syphilis, which was on the verge of elimination in this country, is roaring back. The condom culture that we worked so hard to establish is being destroyed. Just as we did in the 80s, the only way that we can reverse this devastating trend is on a grassroots community basis, which will take courageous leadership. The LGBTQ community has played a crucial historic role in the war against AIDS. So many of the most important heroes in this battle have come from our community. We understand the devastation of AIDS and also the empowerment that comes from taking action in our own defense. We have many lessons to share with others around the world. Perhaps our most important role is to not allow the world to forget AIDS and to require everyone from our governments, churches, educational institutions, community organizations and society as a whole to keep the promise to not give up the fight against HIV until we have won. AHF will continue to keep its promise. We are currently treating more than 820,000 patients in 15 states and 39 countries. We will break the one million mark in 50 countries in the foreseeable future. We will continue to partner with anyone, anywhere who shares our commitment to ending AIDS - the scourge of our time.

PO Box 53352 Washington DC 20009 PHONE

202-747-2077 E-MAIL news@washblade.com INTERNET washingtonblade.com PUBLISHED BY Brown Naff Pitts Omnimedia, Inc. PUBLISHER LYNNE J. BROWN lbrown@washblade.com ext. 8075 EDITORIAL EDITOR KEVIN NAFF knaff@washblade.com ext. 8088 FEATURES EDITOR JOEY DIGUGLIELMO joeyd@washblade.com ext. 8081 SR. NEWS REPORTER LOU CHIBBARO JR. lchibbaro@washblade.com ext. 8079 NEWS REPORTER CHRIS JOHNSON cjohnson@washblade.com ext. 8083 REPORTER & INTERNATIONAL NEWS EDITOR MICHAEL K. LAVERS mlavers@washblade.com POP CULTURE REPORTER MARIAH COOPER PHOTO EDITOR MICHAEL KEY mkey@washblade.com CONTRIBUTING WRITERS PETER ROSENSTEIN, MARK LEE, LATEEFAH WILLIAMS, KATE CLINTON, KATHI WOLFE, RICHARD J. ROSENDALL, HELEN PARSHALL, ERNESTO VALLE, NICOLÁS LEVY, BUNMI JOHNSON CREATIVE DESIGN/PRODUCTION AZERCREATIVE.COM SALES & ADMINISTRATION DIRECTOR OF SALES & MARKETING STEPHEN RUTGERS srutgers@washblade.com ext. 8077 SR. ACCT. EXECUTIVE BRIAN PITTS bpitts@washblade.com ext. 8089 ACCT. EXECUTIVE JOE HICKLING jhickling@washblade.com ext. 8094 CLASSIFIED ADVERTISING/ADMINISTRATION PHILLIP G. ROCKSTROH prockstroh@washblade.com ext. 8092 NATIONAL ADVERTISING RIVENDELL MEDIA 212-242-6863; sales@rivendellmedia.com For distribution, contact Lynne Brown at 202-747-2077, ext. 8075. Distributed by MediaPoint, LLC All material in the Washington Blade is protected by federal copyright law and may not be reproduced without the written consent of the Washington Blade. The sexual orientation of advertisers, photographers, writers and cartoonists published herein is neither inferred nor implied. The appearance of names or pictorial representation does not necessarily indicate the sexual orientation of that person or persons. Although the Washington Blade is supported by many fine advertisers, we cannot accept responsibility for claims made by advertisers. Unsolicited editorial material is accepted by the Washington Blade, but the paper cannot take responsibility for its return. The editors reserve the right to accept, reject or edit any submission. A single copy of the Washington Blade is available from authorized distribution points, to any individual within a 50-mile radius of Washington, D.C. Multiple copies are available from the Washington Blade office only. Call for rates. If you are unable to get to a convenient free distribution point, you may receive a 52-week mailed subscription for $195 per year or $5.00 per single issue. Checks or credit card orders can be sent to Phil Rockstroh at prockstroh@washblade.com. Postmaster: Send address changes to the Washington Blade, PO BOX 53352 Washington, DC 20009. The Washington Blade is published weekly, on Friday, by Brown Naff Pitts Omnimedia, Inc. Individual Subscriptions are $195 per year for 52 issues (only $3.75 per issue mailed to you USPS). Rates for businesses/institutions are $450 per year. Periodical postage paid at Washington, D.C., and additional mailing offices. Editorial positions of the Washington Blade are expressed in editorials and in editors’ notes as determined by the paper’s editors. Other opinions are those of the writers and do not necessarily represent the opinion of the Washington Blade or its staff. To submit a letter or commentary: Letters should be fewer than 400 words; commentaries should be fewer than 750 words. Submissions may be edited for content and length, and must include a name, address and phone number for verification. Send submissions by e-mail to knaff@washblade.com.




D E CE MBE R 0 1 , 2 0 1 7 • 2 3

Civil rights pastor grew in face of change Mourning a friend who reached back across a social divide

RICHARD J. ROSENDALL is a writer and activist. Reach him at rrosendall@starpower.net.

The Reverend Dr. Morris L. Shearin, Sr. was not a member of DC Clergy United for Marriage Equality. He did not conduct gay weddings in his sanctuary. So what brought me tears at news of his death at age 76 on Nov. 18? It is about a journey. Morris Shearin was pastor of Israel Baptist Church, founded in 1880. What brought me to his church in northeast D.C. in the spring of 1997 was an organizing meeting of the Police and Criminal Justice Review Task Force of the D.C. Branch of the NAACP. Shearin was the branch president. His political direc-

tor, Mark Thompson, had invited me to join the task force, whose mission was to re-establish independent review of citizen complaints of police abuse. The sticking point was that a few years earlier, Shearin had refused to accept a donation from the DC Coalition of Black LGBT Men and Women, which had held a fundraiser for the local NAACP branch as a bridge building effort. I had attended that fundraiser, and I remember the phone call from DC Coalition Co-Chair Carlene Cheatam relaying the sad news. The rejection of their donation by Shearin was a bitter pill for DC Coalition to swallow. When Mark Thompson approached them in early 1997 about joining the Police Task Force, they declined. He then approached me in my capacity as president of the Gay and Lesbian Activists Alliance. My GLAA colleagues were wary themselves. It took some convincing for me to persuade them that when a hand reached out to us across a divide, we had to reach back. If I could play a role in healing, I had to try. The Police Task Force included the local ACLU and the National Black Police Association among others. A few years later, the D.C. Council established the Office of Police Complaints, which has done

commendable work ever since. Shearin’s contribution was empowering a younger man to lead in new directions. Over the years, trust and respect grew between Rev. Shearin and me. We both followed Mark Thompson’s career at SiriusXM Radio. Then Mark entered the ministry, and I attended his trial sermon and later his ordination at Israel Baptist, as I had attended his wedding. I was doing commentary in Mark’s studio on election night 2008 when Pastor Shearin dropped by, and I showed him a headline from Nairobi on my laptop heralding the news of Barack Obama’s victory. It wasn’t that Shearin and I got together regularly to argue over doctrine or politics. But we held on, connecting at a personal level despite our differences. He embodied the concept of servant leadership. His vision extended beyond where he himself could go. Without similar journeys by ministers and LGBT activists all over the country, the NAACP national board, of which Shearin was a member, would not have voted overwhelmingly to support civil marriage equality in May 2012. They were ready by then. That was the same month when black LGBT activists and faith leaders formed NoWedge

2012 to defeat right-wing efforts to divide the black vote over marriage equality. The NAACP decision on marriage came 10 days after President Obama endorsed marriage equality. It was after Obama’s announcement, and before the NAACP decision, that I got a voicemail from Pastor Shearin. “Now that you got what you want,” he teased, “you have no time for your old friend Morris Shearin.” Of course I was delighted to hear from him. In 2013, I was in Shearin’s church again to celebrate his 25th anniversary as pastor. I visited many times over the years, often when Mark (who moved to Harlem in 2010) was in town to deliver a guest sermon. Sometimes I felt conspicuous (as when Mark introduced me from the pulpit in my connection with GLAA), but not once did I feel anything but warm welcome. In 2015, I was pleased to attend the opening of the Rev. Dr. Morris L. Shearin, Sr. Community Life Center, which houses Unity Health Care’s Brentwood Health Center. As I write this, I am preparing to cross town once more to attend the funeral of this humble man who grew amid change. Rest in peace, my friend. Copyright © 2017 by Richard J. Rosendall. All rights reserved.


NBC’s Chuck Todd confirms he’s a real jerk Treatment of Pelosi a disservice to viewers

PETER ROSENSTEIN is a D.C.-based LGBT rights and Democratic Party activist. He writes regularly for the Blade.

Last Sunday on “Meet the Press,” Chuck Todd confirmed not only that he’s a real jerk, but that he is a lousy journalist. He had on former Speaker and current Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and spent most of the time trying to get her to say something negative about Bill Clinton and what he did two decades ago. He followed that up by trying to get her say how she is handling Rep. Conyers and his role on the Judiciary Committee. She wouldn’t tell him. When she wouldn’t go along and he got nothing that would make the headline he was looking for, Todd told her there

was no time left for her to talk about the tax bill the Republicans are trying to ram through Congress. What the hell? Todd would rather talk about accusations and innuendo than deal with the screwing the majority of middle-class taxpayers are about to get from Republicans. Republicans are close to pulling off a $1.5 trillion giveaway to the rich and to corporations. That is what will be added to the nation’s deficit according to their own projections. The nation’s leading economists agree with that. The hypocrites in the Republican Party who got elected by promising their constituents they would lower the deficit are now about to increase it dramatically; the people who voted for them be damned. As reported in the Washington Post, “Nine percent of middle-class tax filers (those earning between $48,600 and $86,100) would pay more in taxes next year, according to an analysis by the nonpartisan Tax Policy Center released Wednesday. By 2027, 31 percent of middle-class filers would see tax hikes, the center said.” The Post went on to report “that TPC’s findings are very similar to what the Joint Committee on Taxation,

Congress’ official nonpartisan estimators, reported earlier this week. According to JCT, 8 percent of filers would face a tax increase of $100 or more in 2019 and 16.5 percent would pay over $100 more in taxes in 2027. A sizable number of Americans earning $20,000 to $100,000 would be hit with higher tax bills.” The majority of the tax cuts are going to the top 1 percent of earners and to corporations. The bill cuts the tax rate on corporations from 35 to 20 percent but in reality according to the Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy the 35 percent rate has always been a myth. Hundreds of companies actually pay zero and practically no big company has ever paid the top rate. So we are giving additional major tax breaks to companies that don’t need them. As to how people like Trump would benefit, in his case we haven’t seen his taxes. But from what we have seen according to an analysis if the plan eliminates the AMT (alternative minimum tax), “In 2005, the only tax year in the past couple of decades for which we’ve seen any of Trump’s filings — someone leaked two pages of his return to the financial

journalist David Cay Johnston — he paid $38.4 million in federal taxes, and $31.3 million of that was to cover his A.M.T. liability.” So it’s clear the American public needs to understand what is going on behind closed doors in Congress with regard to what they are calling ‘tax reform.’ Yes it is reform, but it won’t benefit most of us. Yet Chuck Todd has on one of the people who can best speak to the issue and clear away some of the BS Republicans are trying to sell and won’t let her talk about it. I understand the salaciousness of the various accusations, past and present, are clearly of more interest to him. Yes they are important to all of us and as Pelosi said in a nicer way, men are pigs. But the discussion over sexual harassment is really only beginning and we as a society will have to deal with it as we move forward not only in Congress and the political world but in every other area of American life. But within the next two weeks, unless the veil is lifted, Republicans will manage to screw the American people for decades to come with their so-called ‘tax reform’ bill.


2 4 • DE CE MB ER 0 1, 2017


Home gifts sure to please Tom of Finland duvet cover anyone? By MARIAH COOPER mcooper@washblade.com Whether you’re decking your own halls or looking for something super gay to give a pal, we gotcha covered. Campy, kitschy, classy or suggestive, it’s all fair game with the Washington Blade holiday gift guide!


Because of the movie release, Tom of Finland is all the rage this year and there’s a whole line of gift products for the home if you really want to gay it up. Spice up the tree with a 2017 holiday ornament ($22.50) featuring a digital art print of Tom of Finland’s homoerotic design in a Santa suit. The same Santa suit-wearing design can be found in the Tom Time set of two kitchen towels by Finlayson ($10.50). Protect the table in style with a set of four Tom of Finland Portrait wooden coasters ($18.50) made of birch wood. Get comfy in the Tom of Finland Back Alley Sateen Full Duvet Cover by Finlayson ($80.50) which features a graffiti background with the tell-tale Tom of Finland scantily clad male figure. Bring the fun into the bathroom with the Tom of Finland Back Street Shower Curtain by Finlayson ($76.50) which includes a graffiti background and two male figures. There’s also an oven mitt (because why not?), shower curtain, throw pillows and tons more too naughty to print here. Part of the proceeds from certain Tom of Finland items benefit Tom of Finland Foundation. Visit tomoffinlandstore.com for these products and more.



Mitchell Gold + Bob Williams (1524 14th St., N.W.) offers multiple items to add glitz to the home. Make home the hot nightspot with the Bar Tool Set ($145) and a set of four Natural Grey Coasters ($135). Add an eye-catching detail to the shelf with the Black and White Bookends ($100). The Quartz Votive Candleholder ($125) can also bring sparkle to a room.


Want to forget the current administration? Combine history and home decor with the official White House ornament ($24.95) commemorating Franklin D. Roosevelt’s time in office. The ornament is emblazoned with the eagle cartouche on the speaker’s stand at Roosevelt’s first inauguration. Other features include Roosevelt’s dog Fala printed on the back of the ornament, a chevron border similar to the design of a card case Roosevelt carried while in office and four stars representing his four terms as president. Bring a piece of the White House into your home with White House Egg Pendants ($195 each) inspired by the State Dining Room ensemble. The pendants sit on a 24-karat gold vermeil stand. Inside the pendants are a detailed, miniature scale White House with an American flag. Purchase these items and other White House memorabilia at shop.whitehousehistory.org. PHOTOS COURTESY WHITE HOUSE HISTORICAL ASSOCIATION




D E CE MBE R 0 1 , 2 0 1 7 • 2 5




Miss Pixie’s (1626 14th St., N.W.) has an array of stand-out pieces including silver serving dishes ($5-75) and decorative beer steins ($15). Showcase your love for “The Golden Girls” with a painting of Bea Arthur as Dorothy Zbornak ($400) or “The Brady Brunch” with a painting of Ann B. Davis as Alice ($400).


Bring art into the home with work from local artists featured at the Torpedo Factory (105 N Union St., Alexandria, Va.). Barbara Muth sells small-scale WASHINGTON BLADE PHOTO BY MICHAEL KEY paintings ($45) of subjects from dogs to Syrian refugees. For more details on Muth’s work, visit barbaramuth.com. Fierce Sonia’s colorful paintings include small and large scale works range from $25-320 including a painting of Wonder Woman. For details, visit fiercesonia.com.


Market Square Shop (202 King St., Alexandria Va.) can help with festive decorating needs with a gingerbread house ($30), various ornaments ($8-14.50) and candy canes (50 cents each). The Spice and Tea Exchange (320 King St., Alexandria, Va.) not only sells numerous exotic spices and teas but also homeware such as tea cups ($5.95 each) in various colors.


Whether you want to add a few pieces to your own holiday decor or give an unexpected gift, Accents Home and Garden at the new MGM National Harbor (7200 MGM National Ave., Oxon Hill, Md.) has a lot to choose from in classy silver and earth tones. Prices vary.

2 6 • DE CE MB ER 0 1, 2017


AD PT A SPECIES. While one of the Zoo’s pandas won’t fit under your tree this holiday, an Adopt a Species panda package certainly will. Show the animal lover in your life how big your heart is with the gift that supports animal care and conservation around the world—and delivers a cuddly friend. With options to adopt pandas, tigers, orangutans, and other species—including the opportunity to add a private meet-a-keeper tour—we have the perfect present for everyone on your list. Order today at fonz.org/giftadopt. #ListChecked

Blade_Adopt_9.75x5.625.indd 1

fresh custom wreaths

11/20/17 6:27 PM















GARY BARTON was an actor and former senior vice president of production at Walt Disney Co. In 1992, along with his partner Rob Hershman and Congresswoman Maxine Waters, he won the Leadership Award from AIDS ACTION in Washington. PHOTO FROM BARTON’S FACEBOOK PAGE

Losing a lover to AIDS My years with Rob are how I measure time now By GARY BARTON That last month, I could look only in his eyes, for that is where he was. His face was covered with raw open sores. His gray translucent skin was stretched tautly from bone to bone. He had become a body with which I had no history. When I got scared, I held him in my arms and stared into his eyes. They were clear and beautiful and familiar. That is where we connected now. That last month I remember as snapshots of black and gray. Even the blood Rob bled, in my memory, lacks color. Time is distorted and that month seems much longer than a month is. I can still feel myself pushing away certain memories. It has been years since Rob died and

the black flashes stay a little longer now, and very slowly, like a photograph coming up in a darkroom tray, I begin to see the memory develop and fix. When I met Rob, he was beginning to lose weight. I watched him chart his unexplained fevers daily. A friend commented that he thought I was courageous to get involved with someone who was beginning to get sick. Courage had nothing to do with it. I knew after spending a few weeks with Rob, that this was the man I would allow myself to love and with more difficulty, allow to love me. I committed to make the journey of my life with him, not knowing where it would lead. It was quite simply, the wisest decision I ever made.

My years with Rob are how I measure time now. Everything else comes either before or after. The differences between Rob and me were considerable. Rob was very well read and graduated magna cum laude from Harvard. I barely made it through high school. Rob was compulsive about neatness and order. I would leave my clothes in a pile where I removed them. I had been living on my own since I was 17 and had developed street smarts that Rob never did. In fact, he never stopped being naive. But instead of allowing these differences to become a wedge, we learned from each other because of them.

Three years before he died, Rob told me he needed to pursue a spiritual path to deal with what he knew was in store for him. He decided, having been born a Jew, that he would study the Torah. Up until then, he had no particular religious connection with Judaism, but like many Jews, he had a strong cultural bond. In typical fashion, he excelled in his studies and for this, in that last month, the rabbis with whom he was studying, honored him in a ceremony naming him a maggid. Maggid in Hebrew means: a teacher or storyteller. It is an honor that is rarely bestowed CONTINUES ON PAGE 40


2 8 • DECE MB ER 0 1, 2017


EZRA MACLEOD TOWNE How long have you been out and who was the hardest person to tell? More than 20 years as attracted to women but I’ve been gender non-conforming as long as I can remember and out as trans for five years. I started testosterone about two years ago, but identify as non-binary. Hardest people to tell: my eight female housemates in college about being attracted to women. About wanting to take on a more masculine appearance through hormone replacement therapy: my partner Jenny, who has always known I felt neither female nor male. WASHINGTON BLADE PHOTO BY MICHAEL KEY

By JOEY DiGUGLIELMO joeyd@washblade.com The MoCo Pride Center was formed in October for a fairly simple reason — residents in Montgomery County, Md., felt there was a need. “Montgomery County has great protections for the LGBT community but that doesn’t mean that all of Montgomery County is LGBT friendly,” says Ezra MacLeod Towne, board vice-chair of the new group. “When I became a parent, I felt a real loss of queer community because I just didn’t get down to D.C. or in the clubs as much. Those of us who live and work in Montgomery County shouldn’t have to go into D.C. or Baltimore and shouldn’t have to go to bars in order to find queer community.” The MoCo Pride Center exists to “be the leading organization for LGBT resources and advocacy in our county.” The group has a survey at mocopridecenter.org where residents can let the board know what kinds of activities and work they feel the center should provide. Towne, a 42-year-old Basking Ridge, N.J. native, met fellow board members Jill McCrory and Mycroft Masada while organizing a Trans Day of Remembrance event for Montgomery County. They agreed there needed to be an LGBT group in the area and decided to organize one themselves. Towne had been involved in progressive feminist and social justice groups in the area since leaving graduate school. Towne formed a support group for trans people after becoming a stay-at-home parent after Towne and partner Jenny had their second child. Towne came to the D.C. area 17 years ago because of family in the area. Towne and their partner live in Wheaton, Md., with children Elsie, age 9, and Leo, 5. Towne enjoys reading and playing with their kids, various TV shows and “working toward social justice in as many small ways as I can” in their free time.

Who’s your LGBT hero? There are too many for me to even try. What’s Washington’s best nightspot, past or present? I’m a former D.C. King (Boise Studley), so Club Chaos, Phase One, Apex, Black Cat, 9:30 Club. Describe your dream wedding. Dream fulfilled, really. Jenny and I were “illegally” wed in March 2004 at All Souls Unitarian. I didn’t want a religious ceremony, but Jenny wanted a church. All Souls was perfect, as was the non-religious ceremony that the minister, Jenny and I put together. We had a reception afterwards in their fellowship hall complete with music from the First Ladies DJ Collective, our families, fellow students, coworkers, and bad ass queer chosen family as as our guests. We had a D.C. courthouse marriage about a year after it became legal in D.C. What non-LGBT issue are you most passionate about? There is no issue that is not also an LGBT issue but raising kids who are feminist, antiracist, aware of economic injustice, playful, funny, compassionate, avid readers, OK with free play and boredom and practice informed consent for everything. What historical outcome would you change? The invention of guns and bombs. What’s been the most memorable pop culture moment of your lifetime? Drag. King. Explosion. On what do you insist? That non-profits have truly diverse boards that adequately represent the communities they serve. The MoCo Pride Center needs another board member, by the way.


What was your last Facebook post or Tweet? A tweet about a Trans Day of Remembrance event on Nov. 19 in Rockville. If your life were a book,

what would the title be? Something funny happened on the way to anywhere and everywhere. If science discovered a way to change sexual orientation, what would you do? I am saddened that we are still asking this question of queer folk in the U.S. and abroad in 2017. What do you believe in beyond the physical world? I believe that we have one physical world and that’s all there is. I believe that humans are inherently “good,” that capitalism makes being good extremely challenging for all of us and this is what leaves us in need of various forms of faith and spirituality. What’s your advice for LGBT movement leaders? Listen and then lead. If you can’t really listen to the wants, needs, desires, concerns and complaints of your community, you have no business leading. What would you walk across hot coals for? Among many other immediate things: front row Pink or Lady Gaga tickets. And not to be smushed like a pancake when enjoying them. What LGBT stereotype annoys you most? That all trans folk are binary, that gender transition must be physical, social and legal in order to “count.” What’s your favorite LGBT movie? “But I’m a Cheerleader” is a big favorite. “Milk” is another. What’s the most overrated social custom? Thank you cards for kids’ birthday party gifts. Frankly, they don’t give a damn about writing or receiving them. What trophy or prize do you most covet? Trophies and prizes are overrated popularity contests. I’ll settle for being authentically thanked. What do you wish you’d known at 18? You really are still just a kid (albeit a responsible one), and that’s OK. Your life will also change paths many times, and that’s OK, too. Change can suck, but it’s almost always for the better (eventually). I promise. Why Washington? It’s the place I realized that you can give up on your vision of being a radical academic professor (and inspire others to make change), make decent money with a “real job” and still not sell yourself completely out to capitalism and the patriarchy.


D E CE MBE R 0 1 , 2 0 1 7 • 2 9


3 0 • DE CE MB ER 0 1, 2017


E-mail calendar items to calendars@washblade. com two weeks prior to your event. Space is limited so priority is given to LGBT-specific events or those with LGBT participants. Recurring events must be re-submitted each time.

TODAY Miss Pixie’s (1626 14th St., N.W.) hosts its fifth annual holiday market today from 5-8 p.m. Local businesses will be selling their goods including branddave, Marcella Kriebel Art and Illustration, Chocotenango, Typecase Industries, the Lemon Collective D.C. and more. Miss Pixie’s will also have a 20 percent-off sale. There will also be tastings from Cork Wine Bar, D.C. Brau Brewing Company and Shinola Cola. Barcelona 14th Street will also be serving paella. Bitter Dose Combo will play music for the evening. For more details, visit facebook.com/misspixies. Reel Affirmations screens “After Louie” for World AIDS Day at Human Rights Campaign (1640 Rhode Island Ave., N.W.) tonight at 7 p.m. Rayceen Pendarvis hosts the screening. General admission tickets are $12. VIP tickets are $25 and include one complimentary cocktail, beer or wine and movie candy or popcorn. For more information, visit thedccenter.org/ events/afterlouie. Impulse D.C. celebrates World Aids Day with a glow paint party at Studio 52 (1508 Okie St., N.E.) tonight from 9 p.m.midnight. There will be complimentary entry, open bar and desserts. Guests can create their own art by adding glow paint to a canvas or to live male and female models. Free HIV testing from Us Helping Us will be offered. George Washington University School of Public Health will offer surveys. Guests who are eligible for the surveys will be paid $75 on the spot. RSVP required. For more information, visit facebook.com/impulsegroupdc. Brother Help Thyself hosts its second Back to Our Roots bar night at the D.C. Eagle (3701 Benning Rd., N.E.) tonight from 10 p.m.-midnight. There will be draft beers and shots. For more details, visit facebook.com/brotherhelpthyself. The Qrew hosts Holiday Feels, an LGBT holiday dance party, at Songbyrd Music House and Record Café (2475 18th St., N.W.) tonight from 10 p.m.-2:30 a.m. DJ Tezrah will play music. Proceeds will benefit Calvary’s Women’s Services. There will also be a food drive giveaway. Each non-perishable item donated will give one ticket toward a free pair of JBL headphones. For more information, visit facebook.com/theqrew.

SATURDAY, DEC. 2 Commissary (1443 P St., N.W.) celebrates being chosen as the Washington Blade’s Editor’s Choice for “Best Bottomless Brunch” with a Bottomless Britney Brunch today from 8 a.m.-4 p.m. Bottomless mimosas and


The Washington Ballet’s ’Nutcracker’ debuts on Thursday, Dec. 7 for its annual holiday run.

bloody Marys will be $15. Britney Spears music videos will play on a projector. There will be drag performances and Britneythemed cocktails. The Washington Blade will give out prizes for Britney trivia and Best Britney. For more information, visit facebook.com/washingtonblade or make reservations at commissarydc.com. Flash (645 Florida Ave., N.W.) hosts its last Flashy Saturday of the year today from 4-10 p.m. The party will take place on Flash’s rooftop. DJ Twin and DJ Sean Morris will spin tracks. No cover. For more information, visit facebook.com/flashydc. Us Helping Us (3636 Georgia Ave., N.W.) hosts A Passion for Living: A Celebratory Night of Giving, a fundraising event, tonight from 6:30-10:30 p.m. The cocktail reception is from 6:30-8 p.m. followed by dinner from 8-9 p.m. The main program is from 9-10 p.m. and the silent auction goes from 6:30-10:30 p.m. Funds raised will benefit HIV/AIDS testing, education, treatment and care. For more details, visit facebook.com/uhupilorg.

SUNDAY, DEC. 3 Shi-Queeta-Lee presents “Salute to the Divas,” a drag show, at Chateau Remix Event Center (3439 Benning Rd., N.E.) tonight at 7:30 p.m. Dinner starts at 6 p.m. Admission is $30. VIP tickets are $45 and include 5:30 entry and a drag waitress to serve you. There will be a cash bar. Guests must be 21 and over for entry. For more information, visit facebook.com/ chateauremix. D.C. Leather Pride hosts Bluf, a leather happy hour, at the D.C. Eagle (3701 Benning Rd., N.E.) today from 4-9 p.m. Leather men and women are encouraged to dress in leather attire. For more details,

visit dcleatherpride.org/bluf. D.C. Kids Can hosts Kids and Karaoke, a fundraiser for Casa Ruby, at Ten Tigers Parlour (3813 Georgia Ave. N.W.) today from 4-7 p.m. There will be family karaoke, games, raffles, food, cocktails and mocktails and contests for kids. Tickets are $10 and all proceeds will be donated to Casa Ruby. A percentage of proceeds from the cash bar for food and drinks will be donated. For more information, visit facebook.com/dckidscan.

MONDAY, DEC. 4 Queer Greek Collective, American University Fraternity and Sorority Life and the Center for Diversity and Inclusion for the LGBTQ Greek Dialogues host a dialogue about LGBT Greek life at the Perch (4400 Massachusetts Ave., N.W.) tonight from 7-9 p.m. From 7-8 p.m. those who identify as LGBT will speak on their Greek experience. From 8-9 p.m. transgender individuals will discuss their Greek experience. For more details, visit facebook.com/lgbtgreekcollective.

TUESDAY, DEC. 5 Gertrude Stein Democratic Club hosts its holiday party at Dupont Italian Kitchen (1637 17th St., N.W.) tonight from 7-9 p.m. Rep. Mark Takano will be the special guest. The party will recognize Democrats in the community and celebrate recent political gains. Light appetizers will be served. There is a suggested donation of $35 for annual GSDC membership. For more details, visit facebook.com/ steinclubdc.

WEDNESDAY, DEC. 6 D.C. Log Cabin Republicans hosts its Snowflake Ball at the Chastleton Cooperative (1701 16th St., N.W.) tonight at 7 p.m. Ugly Christmas sweaters and Santa suits are encouraged. Tickets are $5 for members and $10 for nonmembers. For more information, visit lcrdistrictofcolumbia.nationbuilder/ snowflakeball. Victory Institute hosts its International LGBTQ Leaders Conference at Washington Hilton (1919 Connecticut Ave., N.W.) today through Saturday. Special guests include Sen. Tammy Baldwin, Sen. Cory Booker, Rep. Maxine Waters, Sen. Ricardo Lara, former Houston Mayor Annise Parker and Long Beach Mayor Robert Garcia. There will be plenaries, breakout sessions and networking opportunities. Registration is $395. For more details, visit victoryinstitute.org. Bookmen D.C., an informal gay men’s literature group, discusses “The End of Eddy” by Edouard Louis at the Tenleytown Library (4450 Wisconsin Ave., N.W.) tonight at 7:30 p.m. All are welcome. For more information, visit bookmendc. blogspot.com. The Tom Davoren Social Bridge Club meets tonight at 7:30 p.m. at the Dignity Center (721 8th St., S.E.) for social bridge. No partner needed. For more information, call 301-345-1571.

THURSDAY, DEC. 7 The Washington Ballet presents “The Nutcracker” at the Warner Theatre (513 13th St., N.W.) tonight at 7:00 p.m. Doors open at 6 p.m. Tickets range from $30125.


D E CE MBE R 0 1 , 2 0 1 7 • 3 1


一䄀䬀䔀䐀 夀伀䜀䄀 䴀漀渀搀愀礀猀Ⰰ 眀攀搀渀攀猀搀愀礀猀 ☀ 䘀爀椀搀愀礀猀

㘀㨀㌀ 倀䴀

琀甀攀猀搀愀 礀猀 ㄀⼀㈀ 瀀爀椀挀攀 氀漀挀欀攀爀猀 ☀ 爀漀漀洀猀 㠀 愀洀 ⴀ 洀椀搀渀椀最栀琀

猀愀 琀甀爀搀愀 礀猀 最爀愀戀 愀 ␀㔀 漀昀昀 挀愀爀搀 愀琀 吀刀䄀䐀䔀 昀愀挀攀戀漀漀欀⸀挀漀洀⼀琀栀攀挀爀攀眀挀氀甀戀

㄀㌀㈀㄀ ㄀㐀琀栀 猀琀 一圀


SAT, DEC 9, 8pm • SIXTH & I The holidays get hot and bothered as singer Storm Large (known for her work with Pink Martini) lights up Sixth & I with her commanding voice and bawdy humor. Make it a BIG Holiday Ordeal! Use the code HOLIDAY when you purchase for access to the post-performance Young Professionals party at Silo. Don your best holiday apparel (creative cocktail attire encouraged) for an evening of festive fun.

Parental advisory: This program includes mature themes and language. Special thanks: The Abramson Family Foundation

TICKETS: (202) 785-9727 • WashingtonPerformingArts.org


3 2 • DECE MB ER 0 1, 2017


This Week in the Arts provided by CultureCapital.com theclarice.umd.edu. Mean Girls. Thru Dec 3. National Theatre. thenationaldc.org. The Real Americans. Thru Dec 22. Draw the Circle. Dec 1-Dec 24. Mosaic Theater Company. Atlas. mosaictheater.org. The Book of Merman. Thru Dec 8. DC Arts Center (DCAC). dcartscenter.org.


Virginia Opera: The Girl of the Golden West Dec 2-Dec 3. GMU Center for the Arts. cfa.gmu.edu.

Set during the California Gold Rush of 1849, this Italian opera is Puccini’s take on the rough and tough Wild West and features familiar themes of unrequited love, jealousy, betrayal, redemption, and changing fate.

Curve of Departure Thru Jan 7. Studio Theatre. studiotheatre.org.

The night before a funeral, family members gather in a single hotel room in New Mexico, shuffling sleeping arrangements, dealing with absent family members, and preparing for their uncertain futures. A play about the moments you decide how much you will give to someone you owe nothing to.

The Suzanne Farrell Ballet: Forever Balanchine Dec 7-Dec 9. Kennedy Center. kennedy-center.org.

Throughout her career as a dancer, Suzanne Farrell created and redefined many of the great roles of the Balanchine canon. The farewell program is a pageant of favorites, all handpicked for their special meaning to Ms. Farrell. The Second City Presents Nothing to Lose (But Our Chains) Thru Dec 31. Woolly Mammoth. woollymammoth.net. The hilarious and harrowing story of how one Black man went from six years in a state prison to a six-figure job in corporate America to a new life as an activist and satirist. PHOTO COURTESY OF GMU CENTER FOR THE ARTS

THEATRE Crazy For You. Thru Jan 14. Pride Night. Dec 1. Holiday Follies Cabaret. Dec 5-Dec 16. Signature Theatre. sigtheatre.org. In Conversation with Samantha Bee…A Moderated Q&A. Dec 1. Private Confessions, part of the Bergman 100 Celebration. Dec 6-Dec 9. The Second City’s Twist Your Dickens. Dec 5-Dec 31. Kennedy Center. kennedy-center.org. A Christmas Carol. Thru Dec 31. Ford’s Theatre. fords.org. An Operetta Holiday. Dec 6-Dec 10. In Series. GALA Hispanic Theatre. inseries.org.

Top Girls. Thru Dec 2. Keegan Theatre. keegantheatre.com. A Christmas Carol. Thru Dec 24. Annie. Thru Dec 31. Olney Theatre. olneytheatre.org. Fabulous Funny Females Comedy Showcase! Dec 2. Stand-Up Studios. standupstudios.com. Horton Foote’s A Coffin in Egypt. Thru Dec 16. Conor McPherson’s St Nicholas. Thru Dec 17. Quotidian Theatre Company. The Writer’s Center. quotidiantheatre.org. The Last Night of Ballyhoo. Thru Dec 31. Theater J. theaterj.org. The Cameri Theatre of Tel-Aviv (Israel). Dec 1-Dec 2. The Clarice.

Camille A. Brown & Dancers: BLACK GIRL: Linguistic Play / ink. Dec 1-Dec 2. Kennedy Center. kennedy-center.org. The DC Contemporary Dance Theatre / El Teatro de Danza Contemporanea. Dec 2-Dec 3. Fieldwork for Mixed Disciplines Showing. Dec 5. Dance Place. danceplace.org.

MUSIC Stephen Wade. Dec 2. Sons of Serendip. Dec 5. AMP. ampbystrathmore.com. NSO: Noseda conducts, Yuja Wang plays Prokofiev / Rachmaninoff’s Symphonic Dances. Thru Dec 2. Kennedy Center. kennedy-center.org. Fortas Chamber Music Concerts: Cantus. Dec 6. Kennedy Center. kennedy-center.org. MCYO of Strathmore: Symphonic Devotions. Dec 2. Dave Koz 20th Anniversary Christmas Tour. Dec 4. Strathmore. strathmore.org. Nathan Lee, piano. Dec 2. Washington Performing Arts. Kennedy Center. washingtonperformingarts.org. Tempest Trio & Daniel Getz. Dec 3. Bender JCC. benderjccgw.org. Cherish the Ladies. Dec 3. BlackRock. blackrockcenter.org. Tongue In Cheek Band. Dec 1. Arlington Cultural Affairs. Columbia Pike Branch Library. arlingtonarts.org. Spanish Brass. Dec 3-Dec 4. Dumbarton Oaks. doaks.org. Swing Dance with the Music Unlimited Big Band. Dec 2. Glen Echo Park. glenechopark.org. Paul Anka in Concert. Dec 1. Hylton. hyltoncenter.org. Homeward Bound for Christmas. Dec 2-Dec 3. Capitol Hill Chorale. Lutheran Church of the Reformation. capitolhillchorale.org. Inna Faliks and Daniel Schlosberg. Dec 3. National Gallery of Art. nga.gov. Eileen Ivers. Dec 1. Washington Symphonic Brass. Dec 3. Wolf Trap. The Barns. wolftrap.org. Rimsky-Korsakov – Scheherazade. Dec 1. Winter Big Band Concert. Dec 4. Tine Thing Helseth. Dec 5. The

Clarice. theclarice.umd.edu.

MUSEUMS Folger Shakespeare Library. Painting Shakespeare. Thru Feb 11. folger.edu. Dumbarton Oaks. Collecting in Paris and London, 1912–1919. Thru Mar 31. doaks.org. Library of Congress. Echoes of the Great War: American Experiences of World War I. Thru Jan 1. loc.gov. National Archives. Remembering Vietnam. Thru Jan 6. archivesfoundation.org. National Gallery of Art. Edvard Munch: Color in Context. Thru Jan 28. nga.gov. National Geographic. Wild: Michael Nichols. Thru Jan 12. Tomb of Christ. Thru Aug 15. nglive.org. National Museum of Women in the Arts. Inside the Dinner Party Studio. Thru Jan 5. Magnetic Fields: Expanding American Abstraction, 1960s to Today. Thru Jan 21. nmwa.org. Smithsonian Anacostia Museum. Gateways/Portales. Dec 5-Jan 7. anacostia.si.edu. National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian. The Face of Battle: Americans at War, 9/11 to Now. Thru Jan 28. npg.si.edu. Kennedy Center. Exhibit: Fantasy in Japan Blue. Thru Dec 3. kennedycenter.org. Woodrow Wilson House. The Ghost Fleet of Mallows Bay. Thru Feb 28. woodrowwilsonhouse.org.

GALLERIES The Art League. IMPart Ceramics & Bladesmithing Exhibit. Thru Dec 3. Home Sweet Home: On the Move. Thru Dec 3. theartleague.org. Waverly Street Gallery. Tom Kenyon. Thru Dec 2. waverlystreetgallery.com. Zenith Sculpture Space. Black Artists of Today: Reinventing Tomorrow! Thru Jan 6. zenithgallery.com. Bender JCC. Adi Shani. Thru Dec 17. benderjccgw.org. gallery Neptune & Brown. Wolf Kahn. Thru Jan 6. galleryneptunebrown.com. Glen Echo Park. Mosaics: One Piece at a Time. Thru Dec 9. Holiday Art Show and Sale. Thru Jan 7. glenechopark.org. Goethe. German Jazz (Deutscher Jazz). Dec 1-Jan 26. goethe.de. Hill Center. Rachael Bohlander. Thru Dec 30. Michael Ford. Thru Dec 30. Joanathan Bessaci. Thru Dec 30. hillcenterdc.org. JCCNV. Charitable Art | Omanoot L’Tzedakah. Thru Jan 25. jccnv.org.


Our differences are what we have in common! Our multicultural, multilingual environment educates global citizens beginning in Preschool and culminating in the worldrenowned IB Diploma program in Grades 11 and 12.


We welcome applicants from varied language backgrounds and skill levels, including beginners.

Learn more at www.wis.edu

D E CE MBE R 0 1 , 2 0 1 7 • 3 3


34 • D E C E M B E R 01, 2017

O U T & A BO U T




an intimate evening with



with special guests









Leather contest weekend is Dec. 8-10






Leatherman of Color hold their 2018 contest at the D.C. Eagle (4701 Benning Rd., N.E.) Dec. 8-10. On Friday, Dec. 8 there will be a meet and greet and fundraiser from 9 p.m.-1 a.m. The contest takes place on Saturday, Dec. 9 from 7:30-9:30 p.m. Categories will include bar wear, hot jock and formal leather. On Sunday, Dec. 10 there will be a victory celebration. Time to be announced. For more details, visit facebook.com/loc2017.





Dirty Santa party is Dec. 9



Distrkt C hosts Dirty Santa, a holiday party, at the D.C. Eagle (3701 Benning Rd., N.E.) on Saturday, Dec. 9 from 10 p.m.-6 a.m. DJ Ed Wood will play music for the night. Tickets are $20 at the door before 11 p.m., $30 before midnight and $40 after. More than $5,000 in tickets for New Years and Mid-Atlantic Leather Weekends will given away. For more information, visit distrktc.com.








‘Tom of Finland’ opens in D.C. Dec. 6






Revels holiday show features cast of 100 FREE



The Washington Revels presents “The Christmas Revels” at Lisner Auditorium (730 21st St., N.W.) on Saturday, Dec. 9; Sunday, Dec. 10; Friday, Dec. 15; Saturday, Dec. 16; and Sunday, Dec. 17. The cast of about 100, ranging in ages from 8-80, celebrates the winter solstice with a holiday performance. A group of young men set out on a voyage, which includes a deal with the Devil and a flying canoe, to rejoin their families in time for New Year’s Eve. Tickets range from $12-60. For more details, visit facebook.com/revelsdc.

“Tom of Finland” premieres in D.C. at Landmark’s E Street Cinema (555 11th St., N.W.) on Wednesday, Dec. 6. The Finnish biopic tells the true story of erotic artist Touko Laaksonen who gained recognition for his homoerotic drawings of masculine men. The film, which stars Pekka Strang, Lauri Tilkanen and Seumas F. Sargen, follows Laaksonen as he returns to Helinski after World War II and faces discrimination as a gay artist. General admission tickets are $10. Children and senior tickets are $9.50. For a complete list of showtimes and more information, visit landmarkmarktheatres.com.



DE C E M B E R 01, 2017 • 35

I love wandering through Smithsonian museums, eating on H Street with friends, and going to shows at Howard Theatre.


I’m a transgender woman and I’m part of DC.

ZACHARY BOOTH as Braeden and ANTHONY JOHNSTON as Lukas in ‘After Louie.’

‘Thelma’ and ‘Louie’ Norwegian supernatural tale dazzles with forbidden love, mystery By BRIAN T. CARNEY Two interesting movies about love and loss are coming to D.C. this weekend. The first is “Thelma,” a gripping Norwegian drama that is both irresistible and rather hard to describe. It’s a rich coming-of-age/coming-out story that combines the sensibilities of Stephen King and Ingmar Bergman. It mixes moments of psychological realism with moments of horror and surreal fantasy while it tackles issues of sexuality, religion, science and family. The shifting moods are deftly captured by the crisp camerawork of Jakob Ihre and the haunting score by Ola Fløttum. The title character (the first-rate Eili Harboe) has been raised in a small town by her over-protective and deeply religious parents. Against their wishes, she decides to study biology at a university in Oslo. She is attracted to the beautiful Anja (Kaya Wilkins), but as their relationship deepens, Thelma is subject to increasingly intense seizures. Her concerned father Trond (Henrik Rafaelsen) reveals that her seizures are linked to dangerous supernatural abilities that have haunted the family for generations. The acting is superb throughout. Harboe is excellent as the timid, lonely Thelma, torn between her faith and her interest in science, confused by her intense desire for Anja and terrified by her seizures and her emerging powers. Rafaelsen is also first-rate as the frightened father, slowly reveling the fear and concern beneath his stony exterior. Wilkins and Ellen Dorrit Petersen as Thelma’s mother Unni turn in strong performances as women whose lives are transformed by Thelma’s powers. The script by director Joachim Trier and his frequent writing partner Eskil Vogt is exceptional, full of interesting twists and unexpected revelations. It slowly builds to a fascinating finale that is both horrific and tender. It’s no surprise that “Thelma” is Norway’s official selection for Best

Foreign Language Film Consideration at the 90th Academy Awards. In Norwegian with English subtitles, “Thelma” opens at the West End Cinema on Dec. 1. This year, Reel Affirmations will observe World AIDS Day with a screening of “After Louie,” a powerful drama about the ongoing impact of the AIDS crisis. The movie stars award-winning actor and author Alan Cumming (“The Smurfs,” TV’s “The Good Wife,” “Cabaret” on Broadway) as Sam Cooper, an activist and artist is paralyzed by survivor’s guilt. As the film opens, Sam is obsessively editing an art film about his friend William Wilson who died of AIDS in 1999. He smokes and drinks too much and picks up hustlers to avoid intimacy. Sam is also filled with impotent fury: at himself, at the gallery owner who drops him, at his friends for their complacency (he launches into an anti-marriage diatribe when he discovers that two friends have been wed at City Hall) and especially at the younger generation of gay men who seem to be politically indifferent and to have no awareness of the history of AIDS. Things begin to change when he picks up Braeden (Zachary Booth). A mutual attraction grows between the two men and both find themselves reenergized by their arguments about love, sex and politics. Cumming is superb as the frustrated artist and he’s surrounded by a great cast. Booth and Anthony Johnston (who co-wrote the script with director Vincent Gagliostro) bring the younger generation to vivid life as they fine-tune their “open relationship.” Wilson Cruz is strong as Mateo who calls Sam on his outdated racial and sexual politics and Patrick Breen is moving as Mateo’s husband Jeffrey who is fiercely guarding his own memories of Wilson. Despite some flaws (slack pacing and a rather restricted focus on the white middleclass gay community), “After Louie” will undoubtedly spur some great discussions about the ongoing impact of AIDS. “After Louie” will be presented at the HRC screening room (1640 Rhode Island Ave., N.W.) on Dec. 1 at 7 p.m.

Please treat me the way any woman would want to be treated: with courtesy and respect. Discrimination based on gender identity and expression is illegal in the District of Columbia. If you think you’ve been the target of discrimination, visit www.ohr.dc.gov or call (202) 727-4559.



Show your support! Spread word of the #TransRespect campaign by photographing this ad and sharing on Twitter.


“ SLICK … A WHOLE LOT OF FUN.” — Broadway World


Photo of Tim Rogan and Britney Coleman by Margot Schulman.



ARENASTAGE.ORG | 202-488-3300


36 • DE C E M B E R 01, 201 7


Eye of the beholder? New Nu Sass production explores beauty and ugliness By PATRICK FOLLIARD Lette may be smart but he ain’t pretty. In fact, the inventor of a new high voltage conductor is so uneasy on the eyes that his boss won’t allow him to present at an industry conference. In short, his face would be would be bad for business. Assayed by Gary DuBreuil (who is not unattractive), Lette is the title character of German playwright Marius von Mayenburg’s “The Ugly One” now playing at Nu Sass Productions, the lively womancentric company, in the very intimate Caos on F’s upstairs space. Mayenburg’s satire flips the script on looksism. Rather than women dealing with the male gaze, it’s men who are ultra-concerned with their appearance; and it’s the bottom line-focused woman boss Scheffler (Aubri O’Connor), who informs Lette that his better-looking assistant Karlmann (David Johnson) will be introducing the inventor’s latest discovery. Scheffler is annoyed that it’s her job to set Lette straight on his looks. She always thought she’d have a secretary and he would take care of these things. At home, Lette’s wife Fanny (Moriah Whiteman) matter-of-factly confirms what the office has so bluntly stated — his face is unacceptable. Theirs has been an audible and not visual relationship, Fanny explains. Since they met she has tried to focus on his left eye when she looks at him, so as not get the full impact of his general hideousness. But Fanny adds that Lette is a beautiful person just not in a physical way. The all-around pitilessly frank assessment of Lette’s looks are hilarious and the best part of the show. In an effort to save his career and newly damaged self-esteem, Lette visits an ambitious plastic surgeon (again O’Connor) who is hesitant to work on someone so ugly but figures the outcome can’t be any worse than his current condition. The results are a resounding success proving a boon to both Lette’s domestic and work life. Thrilled with her husband’s new visage, Fanny repeatedly asks, “Will it hold?” Things are rosy in the office too. But soon Lette’s new face goes to his head. (He says, “I look like someone I’ll always envy.”)



Women line up. Affairs ensue. His boss encourages him to pursue a relationship with an interested septuagenarian client (Whiteman also). Her gay son (again Johnson) is also hot for Lette. With lots of innuendo about Lette’s work with plugs, this part of the storyline grows a little tiresome. The 80-minute comedy continues along spoofing our beauty-obsessed culture. The doctor begins marketing her skills and soon men are lining up to look like Lette. His assistant is surgically remade to look like him, and even his gay admirer pays to become a mirror image of Lette which fascinatingly toys with identify and some narcissism and leads to a kiss. Renata Fox’s direction is able and clever with scenes quickly and seamlessly changing from one to the next. The small and imaginatively lit set efficiently works as various offices and a cozy living room. The parts are played necessarily broadly but sometimes much too loudly for a tiny space like Caos on F which seats about 30 people. The performances are more interesting when the volume is brought down a few notches. But the cast does a very fine job, especially Whiteman as Franny, and O’Connor, a charismatic actor who towers over DuBreuil’s Lette. After a recent curtain call, I jotted down: “Were Lette a woman she’d no doubt have already had a better sense of her appearance. Society would have made sure of it.” ‘THE UGLY ONE’ Through Dec. 17 Nu Sass Caos on F 923 F St., N.W. $30 Nusass.com



DE C E M B E R 01, 2017 • 37

A tradition of giving back Local LGBT sports teams donate time, money to area groups

Spirit of the

By KEVIN MAJOROS If you look deeper into the activities of the LGBT sports teams in Washington, you’ll find that they’re all donating money to local and national nonprofits. Just a few examples would be the long history of giving by the D.C. Front Runners, D.C. Aquatics Club, Stonewall Sports and the Federal Triangles Soccer Club. One thing that might not be as well known is that the LGBT sports teams are also showing up in person to engage in hands-on work with nonprofits. The importance of the work they are doing isn’t lost on either side. “We put our volunteers through orientation which includes a look at our facets of service along with gender and sexuality training,” says Sarah Beasley, director of operations and volunteer coordinator at SMYAL. “The training helps to foster a vested interest in our organization.” Since its inception in 2010, Stonewall Kickball has been working in the community with organizations such as Friends of Stead Park and Whitman Walker. Recently they volunteered to put new furniture together at SMYAL’s transitional house for homeless LGBT youth. “It was the first time that I had worked directly with the LGBT community and it was a great experience,” says Nick Jordan of Stonewall Kickball. “We ended up going back a second time to finish up the work.” The experience led to Stonewall Kickball volunteering at the SMYAL Fall Brunch where they set up floral arrangements. “Compared to just giving money, it’s really important for us to be involved in the community. A lot of people join the leagues because they are disconnected,” Jordan says. “This is a stepping stone to becoming connected to the other aspects of what makes up our community.” One of the goals of Anthony Scheller’s presidency of the Washington Scandals RFC has been to address more philanthropy. Through his employer, Booz Allen Hamilton, 10 rugby players signed up to volunteer for National Rebuilding Day. “We went to the home of a 91-year-old


Members of Stonewall Kickball volunteering for SMYAL.

woman who was having trouble getting around,” Scheller says. “We installed handrails, elevated toilet seats, painted, cleaned, poured concrete, repaired her fence and installed smoke detectors.” The Scandals have also been up to Stoystown, Pa., where they washed windows at the Flight 93 National Memorial. Gay rugby player Mark Bingham died on the flight in the 9-11 terrorist attacks. “This work has been important for our team because it gives us the opportunity to accomplish something together that goes beyond our original mission statement,” Scheller says. “This is work we will continue to do in the future.” In each of the last six seasons, the D.C. Gay Flag Football League has taken a weekend off for what they call their day of service. The four league conferences break apart with each one doing different work in the community. “Our players are mostly affluent working professionals who are helping to bridge entirely different communities,” says Brian Hotchkiss, commissioner of the D.C. Gay Flag Football League. Their work includes clothing drives along with repairs and maintenance at Casa Ruby, Food & Friends service and football clinics and park restoration at Edgewood Park. “As opposed to giving money, there is something exponentially different in interfacing with someone who is benefitting from what you are doing,” Hotchkiss says. “You are more likely to give back if you have a connection. These days of service allow that connection.”

Season2017 D.A.R. Constitution Hall 1776 D St., N.W. Washington, D.C. Saturday, Dec. 9 at 3 p.m. and 8 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 10 at 3 p.m. for FREE tickets, visit: www.usafband.eventbrite.com

w w w. us a f b a n d . a f . m i l


38 • D E C E M B E R 01, 2017


Too much ‘R-E-S-P-E-C-T’? New Aretha symphonic album so deferential it robs fans of new experience By JOEY DiGUGLIELMO joeyd@washblade.com As audiences for traditional classical concerts continue to decline and our symphony orchestras are forced to get creative to stay viable, the trend of pop and rock acts performing with “full orchestra,” usually on stage but sometimes on recordings as well, continues to draw highly mixed results. Here in Washington, we’ve seen acts such as the Indigo Girls, Ledisi and Babyface perform with the NSO Pops in recent months. These outings are rarely unpleasant — they just tend to highlight the inherent differences of orchestral and pop/rock music. Even an artist whose catalogue you’d think would be a little better suited to the idea such as that of Diana Ross, who performed with the NSO Pops in Dec. 2016, never proves as transcendent in actuality as in theory. Melissa Etheridge is coming in 2018. I mean, yeah, she’s great, but doesn’t the fact that anybody would think to pair Etheridge and an orchestra prove we’ve jumped some kind of heretofore unimagined cultural shark? The string players end up sawing away for long periods while the horns punctuate phrases here and there and take many of the same solos that were present in the original arrangements. One imagines the NSO players are practically climbing the walls in boredom while a core pop/ rock ensemble in the center does all the heavy lifting. Rarely have I heard anyone — Mika’s “No Place in Heaven (Special Edition)” with the Montreal Symphony is a delicious exception — do anything terribly interesting in these endeavors. The new album “A Brand New Me: Aretha Franklin with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra” is the same idea — it sounds like fun on paper but the results amount to little more than a glorified remastering. You walk away with (almost) the same feeling you had after watching Gus Van Sant’s (almost) shot-for-shot remake of “Psycho.” What was the point? The brainchild of producers Nick Patrick and Don Reedman, the team behind a similar series of albums on Elvis Presley (Franklin was not involved in any contemporary sense), “Brand New Me” takes Franklin’s vintage classic recordings


ARETHA FRANKLIN was not involved in her new album ‘A Brand New Me,’ at least in terms of the present day. Her vintage vocals and arrangements were replicated on the new project.

on Atlantic and augments them with new orchestrations, backing vocals and rhythm tracks. The release is timed to coincide with the 50th anniversary of Franklin’s classic “Respect.” The main problems are two-fold: one, Franklin’s isolated period vocals of the era were lost in a fire decades ago so there was no way (even with today’s technology — go figure) to totally separate her vocals from the original recordings. The best they could do was boost mix levels but the result, while not exactly muddy, majorly limits the possibilities. Unlike, for example, the surprisingly delightful Motown Remixed albums from 2005 and 2007, the arrangers here were severely limited by the overall sonic architecture of Franklin’s original tracks. Even in areas where they could have cut loose a bit more — like extended intros or instrumental solos — they opt for little more than bland string noodling for a few measures before the original rhythm arrangements kick in and you barely notice the symphony once Franklin starts cooking. Part of that, sure, is just because Franklin’s classic vocals

really are that great. When she’s in the room, it’s hard to focus on anything but her. Yet the arrangements are so lacking in imagination, it’s pitiful. These types always give the same stock answers when pressed. “Oh, we wanted to stay true to the original flavor of the arrangements” and to mess with a classic too much is akin to sonic sacrilege. That’s a cop out, though. If you’re too deferential you end up robbing fans of any sense of a new experience and that’s exactly what the team here has done. Oh sure, classic cuts like “Think,” “Natural Woman” and “I Say a Little Prayer” go down as easy and as thrilling as they ever did and have just a touch more fizz here and there. But after about 30 seconds you almost forget you’re listening to anything other than the originals. Yeah, it could have backfired but I wish they’d have stuck their necks out and tried something a little more brazen and creative. The only good thing I can say is that, while a little covers heavy (although so was Aretha’s Atlantic output in fairness), they chose their candidates fairly well and sequenced them nicely.



DE C E M B E R 01, 2017 • 39

Alone on Christmas Partner resents boyfriend running off to parents every year

MICHAEL RADKOWSKY, Psy.D. is a licensed psychologist who works with gay individuals and couples in D.C. He can be found online at personalgrowthzone.com. All identifying information has been changed for reasons of confidentiality. Have a question? Send it to michaelradkowsky.com

MICHAEL, My boyfriend is going to leave me at home to spend Christmas with his parents, yet again. Neil and I have been together for five years and I’ve never even been invited to meet his parents. They live in a nearby suburb but don’t know I exist. Otherwise Neil is a great boyfriend. He’s loving and very attentive to me. We always have a lot to talk about and are interested in each others’ lives and work. He knows how to soothe me when I’m sad. Because he is with me, I feel safe in the world, I think for the first time in my life. That’s saying a lot because I am in my 50s. But when Neil goes to his parents for Christmas without me, I feel so lonely. I don’t have many friends and my own family turned their backs on me long ago because I am trans. Neil is worried that his parents, older and not open-minded, would kick us both out of the house if I showed up (I think they’d clock me), and then stop talking to him. His parents are both in their late 80s, practically homebound with many health problems. He says they need his help and he wants to spend their last Christmases with them. I’m not sure how to talk to Neil about this without crying or getting angry. I’m wondering if I should tell Neil he has to choose. That feels mean but it also feels mean that he is leaving me every Christmas. I don’t mind that he goes over every Saturday for a few hours to take care of them, but being left alone each year on Christmas is hard. MICHAEL REPLIES: I’m sorry, I know it is painful to be treated as “less than” because you are different. You could tell Neil he must choose you or lose you, but threatening consequences unless your partner does your bidding is a dangerous move. Once you introduce this dynamic into a

relationship, it’s difficult to stop. Instead, I suggest that you back off the precipice by having a conversation or series of conversations that might bring you and Neil closer. How? Start by acknowledging how hard it is to talk when you have two different positions on such an important matter. This move alone might soften the mood between you. Keeping in mind what you love about each other as you speak could help you keep relatively calm. Striving to listen with empathy, rather than focusing on your rebuttal, would likely make it easier for each of you to understand your partner’s position. Regarding Neil’s fears of parental rejection: I would encourage him to get clarity about whether he is keeping you secret out of fear or based on where his parents might actually stand. Perhaps they are more open-minded than he thinks, or would be willing to stretch to accept the two of you rather than lose their son’s support. Perhaps not. If Neil won’t shift, you will have decide whether you’re willing to live with him as he is: a guy who loves you, soothes you, makes you feel safe and leaves you alone for Christmas to visit his ill, possibly closed-minded parents. Working as a couples therapist for the past two decades, I’ve learned that at some points, all of us are bound to be gravely disappointed by our significant other. That just comes with being in a relationship: two people sometimes want very different things. We do best when we strive to be resilient at those times. If you decide to stay, how might you find a way to be more at peace with Neil’s choice? You might consider seeing Neil’s devotion to his parents in a positive light. While it’s painful to have him choose them over you on Christmas, he is generous in his willingness to love his parents, care for them and keep them company on the holiday, even if they may be putting conditions on their acceptance of him. You might consider working to deepen your existing friendships and perhaps build some new ones, given how lonely you are when Neil is gone. We’re all better off when we don’t rely too much on just one other person for companionship. You might have a lovely Christmas if you had a few close friends to celebrate with even if Neil celebrates elsewhere. And of course, you and Neil could have an early or late Christmas celebration just for the two of you, even if this were not exactly how you would like it to be. You could also end this relationship because you don’t want to accept Neil’s behavior toward you at Christmastime. As you note, you’d be giving up a lot of good and you would certainly be heartbroken. But you would be proving a point. The question is, would proving that point be worth all that you would lose?


LINC S E eet NW C N A M 12 15 U S tr PERFOR 8pm DEC. 9 at 8pm .o r g TICKETS 3pm & t a 6 1 . 9 | gmcw C 4 E 8 D 9 5 3 4 f 10 1 - 8 7 73pm Groups o & DEC. 17 at s t e k ic T 15 4 8 2 0 2 -2 9 3 ll a c e O r o N A or m THEA K r o t c e ir D A r t is t ic o you by Br ought t or A ing Sp ons L t n A e Y s F e r P N JUSTI D ir e c t o r E x e c u t iv e


4 0 • DECE MB ER 0 1, 2017


On World AIDS Day, remembering a lover lost CONTINUED FROM PAGE 27

to a layperson and Rob was indeed honored. He had won many awards including two Emmys and a Peabody award for journalism but this was the acknowledgement of which he was most proud. At that ceremony, our family and friends listened as Rob spoke of how generations ago a person’s character seemed to be so important and that today no one talks about character. Rob had character. He was the most decent person I have ever known. That last month, we had another ceremony at our home. For a long time Rob had wanted some formal acknowledgement of our love. I’d had no interest in emulating a tradition that had never welcomed me. But one night, that last month, I looked at Rob’s body in the bed and decided I wanted to marry him. He was so riddled with pain that there was a moan coming from him that seemed disconnected, as if his body was screaming but not his soul. He once described the pain as a beehive in his brain with thousands of killer bees swarming and stinging him from within. I wanted to give him this gift. And so,

before our closest friends, family, our dogs and our doctors, we stood on our deck and celebrated our love for each other. Not a commitment ceremony really, for the commitment had been made many years before. Rob was frail and had trouble standing that Sunday, and yet his face radiated enormous power and strength. His eyes were present and filled with tears of joy. He died exactly one month to the day with the gold band on his bony finger that matched the one on mine. He was 41. That last month seems nonlinear. The events are jumbled up. Extraordinary moments of profound joy mix with unbearably painful ones. I didn’t only lose Rob that last month. I also said goodbye to Paul Monette, my beloved friend and fellow warrior, who died with his icy, yellow hand sandwiched between mine. For many seasons past, Paul and I talked almost daily, sharing our anger and comparing our t-cells. For 10 years we ran neck and neck, only in this race the winner comes in last. There was no room for anything or anyone that was not directly connected to Rob’s care. Even mourning Paul’s death had to wait. As our world became narrower, Rob’s

world of learning, teaching, and touching people seemed to expand. I often think of him sitting at the dining room table with our Guatemalan housekeeper Dani. Her husband had forbid her to go to school to improve her English. Rob offered to teach her, which he did until a week before he died, his patience vying with his pain. One of the things I so admired in Rob was his total lack of classism. I came home one day and overheard Rob on the telephone explaining to the person on the other end how in American English it was common for certain words to have an opposite definition such as cool and hot, and yet in certain circumstances, they mean the same thing. “People could say that something was very cool as in ‘that song is very cool’ or ‘that song is really hot’ and mean the same thing. I assumed that Rob was talking to Dani continuing one of his lessons. When he got off the phone I said, “How is Dani?” He said, “Oh, that was not Dani, it was Prince Charles.” I sadly thought Rob’s previous dementia had returned and as upsetting that was to me, I just let it go. The next day Rob mentioned how nice it was for Prince Charles to call. With further inquiry I discovered that Rob

actually had been talking to the Prince. Rob had done a story about architecture when producing news for CBS. He had interviewed Prince Charles at Highgrove House, his country estate. They had kept up a correspondence and a friendship and when Charles had called Rob at CBS, he was informed of Rob’s condition and called him to wish him well. I remember Rob used to laugh when he told the story about being left alone in a room at Highgrove, which evidently had hundreds of Faberge eggs just sitting on tables with no security. I thought it was odd that Rob did not pick one up and put it in his pocket but Rob was much too ethical to do that. I viewed it more like taking an ashtray from a hotel. What I thought was cool (and hot) was that Rob did not differentiate how he spoke whether it was to a housekeeper or to British royalty. That was just part of who Rob was. The fact that Rob never made a big deal about his friendship with Prince Charles from before he and I met, was just one more example of his genuine modesty and humbleness. � CONTINUES AT WASHINGTONBLADE.COM


The first “spaghetti western”?



Jovial, festive, merry

Warm and lively






Glorious voices

AMERICAN FESTIVAL POPS ORCHESTRA Holiday Pops: Songs of the Season



VIENNA BOYS CHOIR Christmas in Vienna




Located on the Fairfax campus, six miles west of Beltway exit 54 at the intersection of Braddock Road and Rt. 123.


D E CE MBE R 0 1 , 2 0 1 7 • 4 1

EXQUISITELY RESTORED CLASSIC ITALIANATE VICTORIAN TOWNHOME 530 N Columbus Street Alexandria, Virginia 22314 Offered at $1,395,000

703.346.7283 Martine@Lnf.com

703.403.2465 Ai@Lnf.com

4 2 • DE CE MB ER 0 1, 2017


It’s Like Retirement, Only Better Ingleside at Rock Creek and Ingleside at King Farm are now expanding your possibilities for engaged retirement living. Creekside at Ingleside at Rock Creek and Gardenside at Ingleside at King Farm, our upcoming additions, represent even more choices for discerning people 62 years of age or better. Both communities offer an exceptional, independent lifestyle with upscale offerings, modern amenities and the security of five-star rated, on-site health services.

Don’t miss your opportunity to take advantage of priority choice locations!

An Ingleside Community

An Ingleside Community

For more information call 202-470-3413

For more information call 240-380-2678

3050 Military Road NW • Washington, DC www.ircdc.org

701 King Farm Blvd. • Rockville, MD www.inglesidekingfarm.org

Ingleside at Rock Creek and Ingleside at King Farm are CARF accredited, not-for-profit, continuing care retirement communities. Ingleside at King Farm is expanding with the proposed building of 121 new independent living apartments, 32 private assisted living memory support suites, and a Center for Healthy Living, subject to approval by the Maryland Department of Aging.

Attorneys that are OUTthinking |OUTspoken |OUTdoing ackermanbrown.com


D E CE MBE R 0 1 , 2 0 1 7 • 4 3


Five tips for living in small spaces Donate, de-clutter and choose paint colors wisely By VALERIE M. BLAKE My mother used to tell me that for each item I brought into the house, I should eliminate one I could do without. Having grown up as an only child in an era of excess, that was always difficult for me. It wasn’t until I lost my job in 1997 that financial considerations forced me into the arms of an estate liquidator. I left my Minnesota home on a Sunday morning and returned that afternoon to find an empty household and a check for an amount that in no way equaled the cost of the items that were sold while I was out. The next day, I packed my car with my essentials — a computer, some clothes and three Miniature Schnauzers — and headed for D.C., where I could foresee having to make compromises in my housing arrangements. My situation was not unlike many of today’s first-time or downsizing buyers in the D.C. metropolitan area. Houses and condominiums were smaller and vastly more expensive than the national average, and I knew I would have to make the most efficient use of whatever space I could find. Here are some tips to organize and

maintain a clean, functional, small space that I learned along the way. Donate and de-clutter. Much as we try, we really can’t fit 10 pounds of stuff in a five-pound bag, so we’re often faced with choices of what to keep and what to get rid of. For example, do we really need six glass vases from 1-800-Flowers.com? Can we live without Grandpa’s collection of ugly Christmas sweaters? Start by labeling and filling three boxes : trash, donate and keep. You may want to add a fourth box labeled sell, but be ruthless about what goes in each box and dispose of it as labeled. Enlist the aid of a friend who can remove the box of “someday I might need” items you discretely hid somewhere and, if you’re like me, you’ll probably never miss them. Choose paint and décor colors wisely. Paint walls and ceilings in neutral colors that can be accented by artwork, case goods and textiles. While gray is popular right now, don’t eliminate off-white, beige, taupe or khaki. To make a long, skinny room seem wider, paint the short walls a darker shade than the long walls. Eschew draperies in favor of blinds or shutters. Mix wood accent pieces with metals and glass for a lighter, more eclectic feel, then ground your look with a rug and throw pillows in coordinating or contrasting colors.

You can live large in a small space by following a few easy tips. BIGSTOCK PHOTO; COURTESY OF KASIA BIALASIEWICZ

Hire a kitchen or closet designer. A design professional will know how to incorporate the pull-out step stool, bag of pet food, or space for that cut-glass punch bowl you drag out once a year by coming up with innovative ways to use the walls, ceilings and toe kicks for extra storage. In the closet, your designer can create spaces for slacks, shirts and ties, as well as dresses, heels and wigs. Think built-in shoe racks, jewelry drawers and sufficient shelves, pull-outs and cubbies to store your wardrobe and related sundries. Buy convertible and dual-purpose furniture. A Murphy bed need no longer be just a box that holds a fold-down mattress. Innovative furniture design companies now combine a pull-out bed with a sofa, a desk,

bookshelves, or even a dining table. Look for a coffee table that raises to dining height or a hinged ottoman that can store sheets and blankets. Choose lighting that affixes to walls to free up needed floor space and folding chairs that can hang on the wall or slip under the bed until needed. Consider storage alternatives. You may own certain things, such as recreational equipment, family heirlooms, or memorabilia that you simply cannot part with. That’s perfectly fine, but if you can’t fit them in your home, then you’ll have to bite the bullet and find alternative space. This may be as easy as moving something to your assigned condominium storage cage or your backyard shed, or you could pay a monthly fee to rent an offsite storage unit. You might also have to do a bit of cajoling to obtain permission to use a corner of your parents’ garage. Whatever the item, if it brings you joy, then do what you must to keep it. You can bet my house will always have storage space for Schnauzers.

VALERIE M. BLAKE is a licensed Associate Broker in D.C., Maryland and Virginia and Director of Education & Mentorship at Real Living| At Home. Call or text her at 202-246-8602, email her at Valerie@DCHomeQuest.com, or follow her on Facebook at TheRealst8ofAffairs.



VALERIE M. BLAKE, Associate Broker, GRI, Director of Education & Mentorship Dupont Circle Office • 202-518-8781 (o) • 202.246.8602 (c) Valerie@DCHomeQuest.com • www.DCHomeQuest.com

To be used at the bottom of collateral:

4 4 • DE CE MB ER 0 1, 2017




S AT U R D AY, D E C E M B E R 2 N D | N O O N - 4 P M

Tour these brand new residences, including our two decorated models as we open the doors for the first time at 11PARK. Nestled between two of DC's most vibrant and desirable neighborhoods, Logan Circle and Shaw, 11PARK features a collection of 32 meticulously designed flat and townhome-style condominiums offering an amenity rich and pet friendly community that sets the standard in downtown, contemporary urban living.

NOW SELLING | MOVE- IN THIS WINTER F L AT S P R I C E D F R O M T H E $ 5 0 0 S | T O W N H O M E S F R O M $ 1 . 3 M L E A R N M O R E : L I V E AT 1 1 PA R K . C O M | 2 0 2 . 8 0 3 . 6 3 5 5



All Classified Ads - Including Regular & Adult Must Be Received By Mondays at 5PM So They Can Be Included in That Week’s Edition of Washington Blade and washingtonblade.com

SHARE ADS ARE FREE. Place your HOUSING TO SHARE ad online at washingtonblade.com and the ad prints free in the paper and online.* *25 words or less prints free - anything more is $1/word.


D E CE MBE R 0 1 , 2 0 1 7 • 4 5


LEGAL NOTICE SUPERIOR COURT OF THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA PROBATE DIVISION 2017 ADM 001277 Anne Elizabeth Schneiders, Name of Decedent Ernest C. Raskauskas, Attorney At Law 3109 South Street, NW Washington, DC 20007 Notice of Appointment, Notice to Creditors and Notice to Unknown Heirs Gregory S. Schneiders, whose address is 6302 30th St. NW, Washington, DC 20015 was appointed Personal Representative of the estate of Anne Elizabeth Schneiders who died on October 15, 2017 with a Will and will serve without Court supervision. All unknown heirs and heirs whose whereabouts are unknown shall enter their appearance in this proceeding. Objections to such appointment (or to the probate of decedent’s Will) shall be filed with the Register of Wills, D.C., Building A, 515 5th Street, NW, 3rd Floor, Washington, DC 20001, on or before May 24, 2018. Claims against the decedent shall be presented to the undersigned with a copy to the Register of Wills or filed with the Register of Wills with a copy to the undersigned on or before May 24, 2018, or be forever barred. Persons believed to be heirs or legatees of the decedent who do not receive a copy of this notice by mail within 25 days of its first publication shall so inform the Register of Wills, including name, address and relationship.

2008 KEYSTONE MONTANA M-3500 RL - 5th Wheel Loaded. Generator, Washer/Dryer Combo, 4 slide outs - 2 Living Room, 1 Kitchen & 1 BR. Separate rear living room, with sliding doors (great for guest room privacy). Dual A/C units, Power Roof Vents w/ rain sensors. $25,000. 2006 F350 with Banks Power also available. rphlipper@aol.com


Date of First Publication: November 24, 2017 Gregory S. Schneiders, Personal Representative TRUE TEST COPY Anne Meister, Register of Wills


COUNSELING FOR GAY MEN. Individual/ couple counseling w/ volunteer peer counselor. Gay Men’s Counseling Community since 1973. 202-580-8861. gaymenscounseling. org. No fees, donation requested.



LGBTQ AFFIRMING THERAPY at Dupont Circle Individuals, couples, families, adolescents. Over 15 years serving the community. Mike Giordano, LICSW. 202/4606384 mike.giordano. msw@gmail.com. www. WhatIHearYouSaying.com.

TRUSTWORTHY nonsmoking intelligent household assistant for help maintaining my house, home office, and yard. I already have housecleaning service and lawn services so don’t need that. Parttime or full-time. Interview required. Pay commensurate with skills and experience. SeniorSeeksAssistant@hotmail.com.

Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy



All Classified Ads - Including Regular & Adult Must Be Received By Mondays at 5PM washingtonblade.com

ADOPTION & ASSISTED REPRODUCTIVE Law Attorney Jennifer Fairfax represents clients in DC, MD & VA. interested in adoption or ART matters. 301221-9651, JFairfax@ jenniferfairfax.com.

RESIDENTIAL PROPERTY MANAGER sought for 300-unit cooperative in downtown DC. Customer service background a must. Contact asowers@ keenermanagement.com for more info.

WHOLISTIC SERVICES, INC. seeking Full Time Direct Support Professionals to assist intellectually disabled adolescents & adults with behavioral health issues in group homes & day services throughout DC. Requirements 1 year exp., valid drivers license, able to lift 50-75 lbs, complete training program, become DDS Med Certified within 4 months of hire, ability to pass security background check. Associates degree preferred. For more information, please contact the Human Resources (HR) Department at (202) 347-5334.

EMPLOYMENT LOCKER ROOM ATTENDANTS NEEDED! The Crew Club, a gay men’s naturist gym & sauna, is now hiring Locker Room Attendants. We all scrub toilets & do heavy cleaning. You must be physically able to handle the work & have a great attitude doing it. No drunks/druggies need apply. Please call David at (202) 319-1333. from 9-5pm, to schedule an interview.

FULL SERVICE LAW FIRM Representing the GLBT community for over 35 years. Family adoptions, estate planning, immigration, employment. (301) 891-2200. Silber, Perlman, Sigman & Tilev, P.A. www. SP-Law. com.


Gay & Veteran Owner/Operator. 2016 Luxury BMW 750Li Sedan. Properly Licensed & Livery Insured in DC. www.KasperLivery.com. Phone 202554-2471.

PHOTOGRAPHY STEVE O’TOOLE PHOTOGRAPHY Fine Art Photographer for Portraits & Weddings. Check out my new website - www. steveotoolephotography. com. Specializing in Bears & Big men. Steve 703-8614422.

PERSONAL SERVICES TELL ‘EM YOU sAW ThEiR Ad in ThE Blade classifieds!


Results-Oriented • Affordable

Larry Cohen, LICSW

30 years serving the LGBT community


202-244-0903 socialanxietyhelp.com


See website for NPR story on my work

DAVE LLOYD & ASSOCIATES Top 1% Nationwide NVAR Life Member Top Producder




All Classified Ads - Including Regular & Adult Must Be Received By Mondays at 5PM So They Can Be Included in That Week’s Edition of Washington Blade and washingtonblade.com

SHARE ADS ARE FREE. Place your HOUSING TO SHARE ad online at washingtonblade.com and the ad prints free in the paper and online.* *25 words or less prints free - anything more is $1/word.

4 6 • DE CE MB ER 0 1, 2017


CLEANING FERNANDO’S CLEANING: Residential & Commercial Cleaning, Reasonable Rates, Free Estimates, Routine, 1-Time, Move-In/ Move-Out. (202) 234-7050, 202-486-6183.

Place your HOUSING TO SHARE ad online at washingtonblade.com and the ad prints free in the paper and online.*

Always FREE to listen and reply to ads!

*25 words or less prints free - anything more is $1/word.

Playmates or soul mates, you’ll find them on MegaMates

MOVERS OUR GUYS AROUND TOWN MOVERS. Professional Moving & Storage. Let ‘Our Guys’ Do The Heavy Lifting. Mention the ‘Blade’ for 10% off of our regular rates. Call today 202.734.3080. www. ourguysatmovers.com. GREAT SCOTT MOVING INC. Local & Long Distance, Pianos! A Great Move at a Great Price call (301) 699-2066. Highly` rated by Consumer Check Book, Better Business Bureau, Yelp & Angie’s List. We’ve moved the Blade, let us move you!


Insect, Rodent, & Critter Control. Effective Experience Detecting & Eliminating All Types of Household Pests including Ants, Bed Bugs, Termites & Rodents. Schedule your Pest Inspection Today (202) 455-9924. DC, MD, VA, DE.


(202) 448-0824

www.megamates.com 18+

COTSWALD COTTAGE, MT. PLEASANT Charming Cotswold Cottage. $2800/ mo., util. extra. 2+ bdrms, 1.5 bath. 1824 Irving St. nr zoo, restaurants, Metro. Hrdwd Flrs. Yard. Ample Pking. 202-317-0939.

329 Reymann Drive, Yellow Spring, WV: Luxurious 6,400 square foot Mediterranean style custom home on 32 acres atop Baker Mountain. 20+ mile mountain and river views. Travertine tile, 17foot trey ceilings, sound and lighting system, upgrades galore, 30x60 detached shop. Offered by EXIT Success Realty, call Howard Kronthal at 703-861-8977.




TREE SERVICE BRANCHES TREE EXPERT Company. Full service certified arborists, pruning, insect & disease diagnosis, treatment & removal. 301-589-6181. www. BranchesTreeExperts. com. Angie’s List Award Winner.

RENT / DC FULLY FURNISHED 1 BR/1BA ENGLISH Basement apartment in the LeDroit Park/Bloomingdale. Minutes to metro at Shaw/Howard. Includes cable and WIFI. Email: washingtondcguestsuite@gmail.com.

26 Indian Way, Berkeley Springs, WV: Serenity awaits you in this stunning chalet in desirable Berkeley Springs, WV. Vaulted ceilings with exposed beams, wide plank oak flooring and mountain views. Loaded with upgrades. Offered by EXIT Success Realty, call Shannon Walker at 540336-2220.

TOP RATED MASSEUR Custom bodywork! Exceptional deep tissue & sensual bodywork for total stress relief in private studio both on the Hill & at Farragut Square. Call Erik 202544-5688. In calls only! No texts! Intro Special $99.00. THE MAGIC TOUCH: Swedish, Massage or Deep Tissue. Appts 202486-6183, Low Rates, 24/7, In-Calls.



D E CE MBE R 0 1 , 2 0 1 7 • 4 7


Dr. Roxanne Cox-lyamu

Dr. Matty Mathivannan

AHF Healthcare Centers • HIVcare.org/DC 2141 K St. NW Ste 606 Washington, DC Now Open Late on Wednesdays Mon - Fri 8:30am - 5:30pm | Wed 10am - 7pm 24/7 HOTLINE (202) 329-7189

Issuu converts static files into: digital portfolios, online yearbooks, online catalogs, digital photo albums and more. Sign up and create your flipbook.