Friday, December 19, 2014

Kate Clinton: 2014 LGBT Review & 2015 Forecast

In this exclusive audio interview Emmy Winner Charlotte Robinson host of OUTTAKE VOICES™ talks with Kate Clinton, our favorite political humorist. As we head into the New Year it’s time to reflect on 2014 and chat about what 2015 will bring our LGBT community. This has definitely been another year for marriage equality. As the year comes to an end gay and lesbian couples can now legally marry in 35 states. However, as we move forward with LGBT equality in America there are still 79 countries where being LGBT is illegal. We talked to Kate about how much work still needs to be done and her spin on our current LGBT issues.

When asked what she would like to see happen for LGBT civil rights in 2015 Clinton stated, “Well I think our big challenge in 2015 is going to be the kind of slimy interpretation of the horrible Hobby Lobby case; the right to refuse on your religious convictions and that’s bigger than a company that does flowers saying ‘No we’re not going to do flowers for that gay wedding’. But I do think there’s going to be a lot of push back and not that kind of full frontal assault on marriage equality, but again just more chipping away of LGBT rights.” On marriage equality heading to the US Supreme Court in 2015 Clinton added, “I do think it’s moving. I think that Evan Wolfson, the intrepid Evan Wolfson and the Freedom to Marry have really had a plan that they have been following and I do think their absolute goal is to get a decision about federal marriage equality at the Supreme Court.” When asked about LGBT workplace protection and the Republican majority in 2015 Clinton concluded, “I think there’s been a lot of work done through organizations like Out & Equal that have really been working with corporations and their memberships and their employee relations groups to really talk about discrimination in the workplace. I think that it’s been very much under the radar. They’ve been doing amazing work with corporations not only here but internationally and I do think that the notion that ENDA is just good business might sway moderate corporate business types in the Republican Party. I do think that it does have a possibility but we can’t do it without trans rights…”

Clinton is also very involved with NCLR (The National Center for Lesbian Rights) and LPAC (Lesbian Political Action Committee) conceptualized by her wife Urvashi Vaid to give lesbians a real and meaningful seat at the political table. Currently Kate is working on a new book and revealed to us the name of her new 2015 tour “Hello Katey: A One Woman Pussy Riot” she’ll be performing nationally.
For More Info: kateclinton.com

Monday, December 15, 2014

Larry Robinson Creates New Book “Mirror, Mirror”

In this exclusive audio interview Emmy Winner Charlotte Robinson host of OUTTAKE VOICES™ talks with Larry Robinson psychotherapist and life counselor about his new book “Mirror, Mirror: Reflections of Self: 365-Day Life Journal”. Robinson’s book evolved from 35 years of counseling both LGBT and heterosexual clients and from his Facebook page entitled “Mindful Thinking” that is followed by over 165,000 globally. The emotional growth that can be achieved through this book is truly unique. “Mirror, Mirror” is not a self-help book, it’s a help yourself book. After each of the 365 lessons readers will find a question to answer and space is provided for their answer. You can work on these lessons alone or with a partner. Readers can then return to it any time and check their progress and each time they go through its pages, they will discover something new about themselves. We talked to Larry about his inspiration for writing “Mirror, Mirror” and his spin on our LGBT issues.

When asked about his involvement with our LGBT community Robinson stated, “My involvement goes back at least forty years as my first volunteer job was at a place called The Homosexual Health Center on Boylston Street in Boston where we did volunteer counseling with gay and lesbian men and women. It was operating for about five years and then it shutdown and that’s when I decided basically to go into my own business. Probably it was 1981 that I did some volunteer work for The AIDS Action Committee and I got my first AIDS patient and it wasn’t even identified as AIDS then in ’81, it was called gay cancer. Unfortunately so few people were out at that time. My client was diagnosed with whatever they believed it was and he died about three weeks later, it was very quick. From there I worked with many gay men who were infected with the AIDS virus, who were all HIV positive and unfortunately they all died. I think my job basically at that point wasn’t about how to live, it was more about how to die because the death rate was so enormous at that time. So my hand has always been involved in the community and I think I’ll always be involved. I work now with gay couples, singles, I think it’s part of my life to help people feel better about who they are.”

Larry Robinson has a Master of Education in Counseling from Boston University, is a clinically certified forensic counselor working with the Essex County District Attorney's office in the Juvenile Diversion Program and is a certified divorce mediator. He is the founder of Mindful Thinking that focuses on change and living in the now. His new book, “Mirror, Mirror: Reflections of Self” published by Xlibris, was written with this in mind and with the intention of helping people across the world change and better their lives.
For More Info: mindfullthinking.com

Monday, December 8, 2014

Gay Activist Zeke Stokes New Fashion Tie Line & More

In this exclusive audio interview Emmy Winner Charlotte Robinson host of OUTTAKE VOICES™ talks with Zeke Stokes about his new line of men's ties made in small batches and handcrafted in the USA just in time for XMAS. Inspired by the high quality, handmade items of a bygone era, each piece is constructed with the most discerning tastes in mind. A lifelong lover of fine clothing Zeke’s inspiration for a line of ties came when the grandfather of his partner passed away unexpectedly and left a treasure trove of vintage menswear behind. They were well crafted, timeless and inspired the collection. A number of them contained three buttonholes on the end of the tie to keep it fixed in place to your shirt. Zeke decided to make this a signature of the new line. We talked to Zeke about his passion for fashion and his spin on our LGBT issues.

When asked what he would like to see happen for LGBT equality in the next few years Stokes stated, “If you look at national polling seven out of ten people in this country say they know someone personally who is LGB or T and we know that knowing someone personally is the thing that brings about acceptance and inclusion. We need to get that number to ten out of ten people. In the South that number is more like six out of ten people so we have a little more work to do in the South then we do in other places in this country. We know that knowing someone personally, having someone in your personal life either at work, at school, at home in your family, that’s what makes a difference and brings people through the journey of acceptance and inclusion and that’s what I would love to see. This means that we need people coming out and speaking publicly about their authentic lives. I was so excited to see Ty Herndon the very popular country artist come out publicly and be quite a groundbreaker in the national community. Very quickly he was followed by Billy Gilman who sold millions of country albums, who came out and said Ty Herndon inspired him to do that. We need these kinds of voices; we need voices from the world of athletics, Michael Sam, Jason Collins, such pioneers, we need more of those and we need more allies. We can’t do this alone there aren’t enough of us to move the needle for everyone. So we need allies to tell their stories of moving from a place of non-acceptance to a place of acceptance, inclusion and understanding. I think that’s where our work needs to be focused right now.”

Currently Zeke Stokes is Vice President of Programs at GLAAD (Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation). He leads a staff of media professionals in both Los Angeles and New York City in GLAAD's Entertainment Media, News Media, and Spanish-Language Departments, as well as the organization's transgender, sports, international and youth initiatives. Previously he was communications director for Servicemembers Legal Defense Network and then director of external relations at OutServe-SLDN where he played a key role in advancing LGBT military equality, repealing “Don't Ask, Don't Tell” and defeating the so-called Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA). In addition to his new tie line and his work at GLAAD, Zeke is currently a co-producer on the upcoming docu-reality series, “TransMilitary”.
For More Info: zekestokes.com

Monday, December 1, 2014

Getting Groomed By Wedding Planner Jason Mitchell

In this exclusive audio interview Emmy Winner Charlotte Robinson host of OUTTAKE VOICES™ talks with wedding planner Jason Mitchell about his new organizer “Getting Groomed: The Ultimate Wedding Planner for Gay Grooms” that offers a refreshing approach for LGBT readers planning a wedding or commitment ceremony. Gay couples will learn how to set a budget, organize the guest list, design invitations, dress and style the big day and much more. With plenty of wit and charm “Getting Groomed” provides pockets for stashing important forms and contracts and your master timeline will keep you on track for your event. In keeping you organized “Getting Groomed” helps prevent couples from doubting their decision-making skills. The checklists, folder and timeline included in this book will keep the planning process simple, foolproof and fabulous. This elegant planner is the perfect resource and XMAS gift for stylish grooms-to-be. We talked to Jason about his inspiration for creating “Getting Groomed” and his spin on our LGBT issues.

When asked what he would like to see happen for LGBT equality in the next few years Mitchell stated, “I would like to see marriage equality happen and I think that is really something at the forefront but there’s a lot more to come. Once we reach a point where everyone can be married we need equal rights as far as our family planning. It’s so challenging for gay couples to have families. It’s incredibly expensive and I think we need to fight to make it more available. There are some wonderful families out there that are eager to be parents and just because of legal issues or finances they’re not able. And yet there’s so many kids that could use loving homes from parents who really, really want to be parents and what I think is so specific to gay couples is there are no accidents. They’re parents because they want to be parents and those are the kind of people who should be having kids and raising them in the world filled with love and support and allowing them to be our next generation. So I think there’s a lot of work still to be done in that arena.”

Currently Jason Mitchell serves as the Wedding Planner for Shiraz Events in NYC. In addition to his work in events Jason is an accomplished playwright. His most recent work “The Boys Upstairs” which premiered in the 2009 New York International Fringe Festival is headed to London in January 2015. On a personal note Jason and his husband live in Manhattan’s Upper West Side and were among many people who fought for marriage equality in New York. They actually got engaged and booked their wedding venue a few hours before the bill officially passed.
For More Info: getting-groomed.com