Monday, February 28, 2011

Gay Activist Phil Siegel Speaks OUT

In this exclusive audio interview Emmy Winner Charlotte Robinson host of OUTTAKE VOICES™ talks with Phil Siegel, Producer of “Coming Out in the 1950s: Stories of Our Lives” a new 14 minute video, as part of the Pye/Harris Legacy Project. In the video, three teen journalists interview gay elders about their coming out experiences during the McCarthy era when there was no visible gay community. Stories include Hadley Hall, an ROTC member who was outed and summarily discharged, Ron Rebholz, an academic who gave up a promising relationship to pursue an education because of the fear he experienced if the relationship continued, and Phyllis Lyon on her experiences founding of the first lesbian organization in America, the Daughters of Bilitus.

We talked to Siegel about his 35 year commitment to LGBT civil rights. Recently the Obama Administration decided not to appeal Section 3 of DOMA, the Defense of Marriage Act. Section 3 applies to federal benefits and was found unconstitutional by a Federal Judge in Boston. Phil lives in California, where Prop 8 was also found unconstitutional and yet gay couples are still being denied marriage. When asked what his spin was on all this Siegel stated, “ I think this is like a huge baby step and I’ll tell you why. I love the idea that we’re going in this direction but I think that marriage on a state level is a very nice trophy to have on your mantel…My partner is Spanish and he wants to immigrate here. If I were straight we could get married tomorrow and he could be here. I can go to Spain (where gay marriage has been legal since 2005) in a Catholic country and I would have a green card and healthcare for the rest of my life and believe me that sounds appealing. The truth is we are not sure of where we will end up but the decision does not have to be based on workability and immigration if this were a federal law.”

Phil Siegel is also a publicist and has offered his services to national projects like the AIDS Memorial Quilt Tour in 1988. He also served as Co-Communications Director for the 2009 National Equality March on Washington D.C. He was on the founding board of Under One Roof that raised over $8 million for AIDS organizations and sat on the board of the AIDS Emergency Fund and the Breast Cancer Emergency Fund. He has lived in San Francisco for nearly 30 years but spends much of his time with his Spanish partner in Barcelona.

“Coming Out in the 1950s: Stories of Our Lives” has just been made available for gay teens to learn about the history of the gay community.
For More Info: Pye/HarrisProject.org

Watch Video

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Gay Activist Richard Emmanuel Speaks OUT

UPDATE: OUTTAKE BLOG™: Is DOMA Headed to Congress?
In this exclusive audio interview Emmy Winner Charlotte Robinson host of OUTTAKE VOICES™ talks with Rev. Richard Emmanuel, Founder of The Church, a non-profit organization in East Gloucester, MA, which is dedicated to raising individual and collective consciousness and increasing spiritual awareness. Emmanuel, a visionary and dedicated political activist, has a very truthful and honest spin on the Obama administration and the reality of the future of our LGBT Civil Rights.

In the aftermath of “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell” being ruled unconstitutional in federal court, the Obama Administration continues to appeal the Log Cabin Republicans vs. The United States of America decision despite the fact that ‘Don’t Ask Don’t Tell’ has been repealed and signed into law. When asked what his thoughts are about this Emmanuel stated, “ This is the illusion of due diligence. We’re fed these illusions that something is happening. This process of ‘Don’t Ask Don’t Tell’, that was a stupid solution when Clinton came up with it. And how many hard core people screamed about it and said ‘This is a ridiculous settlement.’ It is now, as it was back then, and just by keeping it in this limbo state of people still talking about ‘well we’re making the transition,’ this is the carrot being dangled in front of the donkey. As long as you’re pulling the wagon that’s what they want you to do. And that’s why the subject is still there.”

Emmanuel also addressed gay marriage and DOMA, the Defense of Marriage Act. Section 3 of DOMA which applies to federal benefits that was found unconstitutional by a Federal Judge in Boston. Prop 8 which was also found unconstitutional in federal court is now headed to the California Supreme Court once again. As we wait for the outcome of these federal actions our LGBT families whether married, domestic partners, in a civil union, or legal strangers under our particular state's law, are denied 1,138 federal rights of marriage that all heterosexual families enjoy. Our LGBTQ teens are up to four times more likely to attempt suicide than their heterosexual peers and Emmanuel gives his insight on this heartbreaking trend.

Richard Emmanuel is a provocateur who creates both concept iconography and media assemblages in 2d, 3d, and internet media. His work is an exploration of consciousness with great emphasis drawn from the ancient civilizations on this planet and the “aboriginal dream” which spawned these ancient narratives. The practical use of his concepts and “designed environments” has been used in international corporate communications and exhibits. A recent show at the Baltimore Visionary Art Museum used three of his works to express the concepts expressed in nihilism.

Richard understands that the greatest task is to teach each generation the quest for “what is truth” Emmanuel sees the path and agrees with the greatest of ancient teachers… that is…“one can only point the way” … and above all “know thyself.”
For More Info: TheChurch.org

Watch Emmanuel's GOP Video
"Greed Over People"

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Gay Ally Josie Cotton Speaks OUT

In this exclusive audio interview Emmy Winner Charlotte Robinson host of OUTTAKE VOICES™ talks with Pop Diva Josie Cotton about her new CD “Pussycat Babylon” which includes a danceable remake of her controversial 1982 hit "Johnny Are You Queer?" "Johnny Are You Queer?" was the first time the word ‘queer’ appeared in a Top 40 song. Cotton was then lambasted by the religious right who raised such a controversy back in the 80’s, that her record company canceled the video shoot the night before it was scheduled. The good news is in celebration of her new album “Pussycat Babylon” she’s running a Youtube contest asking fans to make their own “Johnny Are You Queer?” video. They’re awarding $2k in cash prizes to a handful of winners. “Basically I thought everyone would like cash instead of a stuffed animal or something,” Josie said.

Cotton lives in California. When asked what her reaction is to Prop 8 being overturned and found unconstitutional and yet gay couples are still being denied marriage Josie stated, “You know I just found it outrageous. They continue to overturn a variety of things in California when it’s been passed as law and this I find reprehensible. You know we call this ‘the land of the free’ and I don’t know why it excludes ‘the pursuit of happiness’ by people who are in love. I was very upset by it. I don’t know why it is such a problem for some people. I really don’t get that.”

Josie Cotton spent a year in the studio making “Pussycat Babylon” with the help of legendary keyboardist Paul Roessler, who co-produced the record with Josie. Other notable contributing artists are Princess Frank on drums, Black Flag Kira Roessler on bass and Dead Kennedys producer Geza X on guitar.
For Contest Info & More: JosieCotton.com

Monday, February 7, 2011

UK Gay Activist Colin Fallesen Speaks OUT

In this exclusive audio interview Emmy Winner Charlotte Robinson host of OUTTAKE VOICES™ talks with Colin Fallesen, CEO & Creative Director of the UK online network Queer Channels on Demand or QUOD.tv. Recently QUOD.tv launched a syndicated news service Pink Sixty with Pink Paper UK. Pink Sixty is the world's only lesbian, gay, bisexual and transsexual TV news bulletin that delivers the latest LGBT global news every day. Fallesen stated, “The prime aim of it is to bring gay and lesbian stories to a worldwide audience especially in areas where access to these kind of stories is difficult to get as in Arab states and Africa.”

When asked what his reaction is to the snail pace for LGBT civil rights in America, Colin stated, “It’s very difficult for the US. It’s such a large country and from the perspective of an outsider it has a very rightwing lean generally, both socially and living government. Obama is now President which is the most amazing step forward for America and a step forward for civil rights of gay people but also for other minorities even immigrants living in the country illegally now. He’s kind of really stepping up and demanding respect for everybody which is just the most amazing thing. We’re all happy to see that. It’s very difficult for the US, I think it always has been, to find a pace to move forward quickly because a lot of it relies on social change and when you have a very core rightwing part of your country, to get to those people and to get them to change their attitudes is almost impossible. So it just takes time.”

QUOD.tv started life as The Queer Channel in 2005 after winning the Best New Channel proposition at London's annual Digital Channels Conference organized by Broadcast magazine and their publisher's EMAP. Business partners Colin Fallesen and Richard Gordon acquired two more business partners, one from Channel 4 and the other from Channel 5, bringing a finance director and business affairs manager to the team. Fallesen has over 15 years design, branding and marketing experience in the broadcast TV industry and Gordon has 12 years experience at the BBC, Red Bee Media and at Channel 10 Australia.
For Info About QUOD.tv & Pink Sixty: QUOD.tv