Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Stuff bustin out all over....

"Stuff is bustin out all over," and we are in hot pursuit of posting breaking news,updates, links and all the vital info we can muster. There are enough scheduled events coming up to make your head spin! As your online destination, it is our mission to gather, disseminate and promote as many national, statewide or local happenings as possible. We encourage your participation as either a citizen journalist or bystander who's got the goods on what's really going on in our community. Therefore, ladies and gentlemen and all those who haven't decided...the news!

In Salute to those comrades who shared their visions ,passions and strength,The Body Politic acknowledges Black History Month 2007. We will highlight significant individuals throughout the month as a means of reaffirming the contributions of African Americans within the culture.

NWA Sounds off: Kudos and "high five's" go out to various members of Northwest Arkansas's progressive community. In conjunction with there recent Gender Identity presentation at UUC-fayetteville, they were highlighted on a segment of National Public Radio which aired 1/28/2007 with a subsequent website feed available 2/2/2007. Also,NWA Community center President, Donna, accompanied by other members traveled to Little Rock in an outreach effort to meet local activist, witness the swearing in of Kathy Webb,(Dist. 37) as the first openly gay person elected to state office and check out the local color. The Body Politic applauds our NWA brother and sisters for there tremendous surge forward. As of 2007 they have a new toll free number for assistance, 1.888.391.9222

Yippe Ki Aye...: It seems that the management and membership of Northside's, Sidetracks, just won't rest until you've been eithr fed or entertained. According to Bar Manager, Hank, the calender is simply bustin loose with a range of activites that speaks to all levels of the community. Congrats go out to Team Jackie and Buffy for having the winning chili recipie in the recent club cook-off. Despite stiff competiton sources state that the two women had a robust, yet flavoful concoction that wowed the judges. The gang from Easy Street were awarded 2nd with Scott Harper in third place. And it doesn't stop there. A new Thursday night "freefall" featuring area musicians will start 2/1, at 7 p.m.,featuring singer/songwriter Brenda Lyons, who will bring her brand of unique music to the clubhouse. There is no admission charge. For more information join Sidetracks Yahoo group. Click to: Tell them you heard it here first!!!!

Discussion in the House!: In our last posting we raised the question: Is Little Rock ready for a Gay Chamber of Commerce? Some of the talking points all ready starting to trickle in concern whether organizations such as this are elitist or attempt to manipulate. Are our rainbow dollars being dilluted in an attempt to "mix & mingle" with tolerant heterosexuals? A local Chamber Vs. Ole' Boy Network of doing business in Little Rock? Chamber Creation 101: Who and How ?
As usual we are seeking valuable imput and thought provoking viewpoints community wide. Please note that your comments will be posted, so if you can't stand the heat in the kitchen, then don't come in here and try to cook with us.

Crowns-R-Us!! Taylor Madison Monore resigned 1/28 by letter to the Pageant Board of Directors as the current reigning Miss Gay Arkansas 2006. The title has been assumed by Raven St. James, First Alternate. The annual pageant seasons begins with the coronation of Miss St. James, Febraury 4, prior to the begining of Miss Little Rock preliminary, being held at Backstreet, 1021 Jessie Road. Call Ken Brown, 664-2744 for more information.

A Factory Re-do: As we see it, The Factory, 412 louisiana, has become the communites answer to the Rubics Cube due to there ever changing schedule of opening times, personnel changes and activites that have many folks scracthing there heads. Case in point, on a recent evening the club was slated to be open,(including an illuminated "open" sign) yet the doors were locked leaving guest standing in the cold speculating about the situation. There was no notification posted of any kind, despite a text message that was sent out to the "text circle" alerting them to the addition of new pool tables and drink specials. Here's our two cents. If you are going to earn the respect of patrons then putting your best foot forward always will take you in the right direction. In business, either your put up or close up. Think about it!

Monday, January 29, 2007

Talking Out Loud 2007

January is exiting stage left as the new year get's off to a roaring start with so many juicy topics. The new Democratically controlled Congress is in an uproar over it's rubics cube called Iraq, President Bush is entrenched into his mindset that victory is at hand, VP Dick Cheney is all but tripping the light fantastic with his assessment as he rebukes those who dare ask about daughter, Mary's decision to have a child with her LTC( long time companion- 15 years and counting), Heather Poe. The VP gave interviewer Wolf Blitzer that "no you didn't ask me that shit" look and stated that the question was simply "out of bounds." Oh how we disagree with his premise that Ms. Cheney's choice to have a child is somehow private, when she herself has put every one on notice about her life with her very public book, Now,It's My Turn. Wolf Blitzer gets a "attaboy" for staying professionally stoic and only slightly rebuffed.

Gay Rehab...Who knew? Could the old saying, "only in California" be reinstated as the wack state of the Union trots out another star for a public flogging. This time Isaiah Washington of Grey's Anatomy fame, was being taught the lesson that "all that glitter isn't gold," even if you are apart of a hit series. Do not pass Go, but go straight to REHAB. In case you missed it, Mr. Washington has been duly accused by T.R. Knight of dropping a "F" Bomb on him while on the set, subsequently causing him to be "lanced," before he was ready as told to talk show host Ellen. Meanwhile, according to Mr. Washington's peeps, he is quietly atoning for this indiscretion and will be back more gay friendly, as the cameras roll very soon.

No Envelops,Please: The Little Rock Pride Committe has announced that it has cancelled it's Academy Awards fundraiser due to scheduling conflicts. However, it's February 9th, Faces of Pride show will go on at UBU,824 W. Capitol. Tickets for other area events and informational booths are also tennatively planned.
Need more info call the club, 501.375.8580

Local GLBT Chamber of Commerce? The idea is being floated within the community that Little Rock should explore creating an GLBT Chamber of Commerce,similar to other major cities. A chamber could harness the power of local businesses and assist in creating a hub for organizations to canvass for sponsorships, networking and maximizing resources. This is a novel idea and has worked in other cities who also host Expo's and have been instrumental in creating "rainbow districts." We support the concept and would hope that it would find enthusiatic supporters. Feel free to comment and share your insights with us.

ART 4 You!!: The Art Scene, 201 Maple Street in North Little Rock is ready for the communities talented tenth to come forward and share there artistic sides. Each 2nd Friday of each month the venue offers art supplies, socializing and a chance to create your Mona Lisa with provided models. The cost is $10 and the experience is priceless. Stay tuned for more from this new hot spot!

From the Yeah I said it file!:
Naomi Campbell, fresh from yet another court date has decreed the following... "Any drag queen who wears anything less that 4 1/2 inch heels are wasting their time. You either do it and go the whole distance or don't even bother."

Fast Fact: Did you know that there were more bankruptices in the United States last year than college graduates?

Got News...We are ruff and ready for your announcements, comments, and general backtalk. Let us hear from you today!

Thursday, January 25, 2007

Body Politic 2007: Podcasting To You!

It's here! Our first podcast installment for 2007 and it's jammed packed with all the latest news, music and announcement of activites in the GLBT community and beyond. We are continuing our partnership with Evoca and will soon add a new feature allowing you our readers to leave us you comments live! So check it out, adjust your volume, click on the icon and listen into Arkansas' GLBT communities only podcast.

The Body Politic supports the efforts of the National Black HIV/AIDS Awareness Day being held nationwide, Feb.7, 2007, with local activites being sponsored by the JCCSI clinic, College Station Health Unit, Feb. 6, 8:30 am - 12:30 p.m. 4602 Fraizer Pike. Informational booths and tables, onsite educators and complete testing will be available.
This activity is open to the general public without regards to sexual orientation.
We encourage your participation and awareness to your sexual health throughout 2007.

Don't forget our partners, The Center for Artistic Revolution's 3rd Annual, Toma Mi Corazon (Take My Heart) Silent Auction and Tex-mex Dinner
February 10, 2007
Quapaw United Methodist Church
1601 S. Louisiana
Dinner/ Preview Party: 6 p.m.
Silent Auction: 7 p.m.
Tickets $15.00/ advance $17.00/at the door. Students w/ID $10.00
Contact: 501.244-9690 or e-mail:

Next Post: Manscaping, "V" Day suggestions and much more!!

Monday, January 22, 2007

New Power Generation

Donna Summer in tribute to Luther Vandross from a French video release.

From the where are they now file: If you have had enough of the cold weather and decided you may need a getaway, try checking out songstress, Donna Summer who is back in the mix with two appearances scheduled for 2007. First stop, Universal Orlando's Mardi Gras Celebration, February 2 and March 3 in San Juan, Puerto Rico. As the planning for GPW 07 get's underway, wouldn't it be great if talent of this caliber could be included in our line up similar to the larger cities that have Pride day's that are off the hook and memorable. Of course, this begs the question, how much excitement could be amassed or that all important creative sponsorship that would be instrumental. As I understand, the pride committee has had some "verbal" committments and are desperately seeking firm obligations from interested sponsors. However,as an event planner by trade, such cooperative agreements have to be forged long in advance and certainly cultivated with a "win-win" factor. Especially for the sponsor, who look for returns on there investment and organizers who hope to keep future awards. It's my two cents that, it seems like there's a lot of work to do in a short period of time with some very limited resources.

United for Equality 2007: United for Equality is the national theme for GPW celebrations around the country inconjunction with the Little Rock Pride Fetival scheduled for June 3, 2007 at the Rivermarket. As a prelude, the committee will host, Faces of Pride, Febraury 9 at the UBU nightspot and a local Academy Award bash. Organizers are also seeking supporters for their, "Circle of 100" patrons list. Donating $100.00 will help underwrite festival expenses and general organizational support. Click

Mind Melds 4 U... The Arkansas Queer Coalition, February 16-17, is sponsoring the first statewide conference at Hendrix College in Conway, AR The tenative schedule features workshops on "the Mechanics of Oppression," "People of Color Solidarity," and "Trans Speak Out." Registration and accomodations info can be found at:
This event is open to students and the general public.

Benefits-R-Us 2007: It is an acceptable practice of Non-profit organizations to rely on donations, grants, sponsorships and fundraisers to offset there operational cost and client services. However, The Body Politic was intrigued at yet another fundrasier, hailed as a "Golden Globe Watch Party" held for AAF at Easy Street piano bar Monday, January 15, that seemed to lack any guest. Sources state that the proprietor was fully prepared to entertain, but was chagrined at the turn out, including most fellow board members who failed to attend. Not to mention the lack of publicity the event was given by the in-house committee. In a last ditch attempt to save face, the owner resorted to using his cell phone list to entice attendance. Could the community be suffering "fundraising" fatigue or is this another occassion of inept planning syndrome? Stay tuned...

Watch for our new feature, The Body Politic Ticker that will bring you the latest news and future items to seen only here!

Friday, January 19, 2007

The Hustle and Flow continues...

What a difference a few weeks make, as we continue to gather steam to forge into 2007 covering the LGBTQ community at large and beyond. Our committment to the AIDS crisis remains paramount with our participation in the National Black AIDS HIV/AIDS Awarness Day, February 7. We will continue our partnerships with YOUTube, Evoca and newsfeeds in our mission to be your online destination for the most up to date news, video, podcasting, commentary as well as an information portal. However, doing our best means encouraging our readership to giving us your best leads, comments, corrections and breaking news from your neck of the woods. The year is just getting started and we are anticipating the excitement to take us to new heights!

Show me the Money! At post time we are still awaiting an accounting announcement for all the benefits that were held on behalf of the Arkansas AIDS Foundation to assist with client services. To date, no figures have been released via website or press release, especially those associated with the much ballyhooed, Simply Red bash held in December. If you've got th skinny on how much was raised share it with us. However, Kudos go to Raven St. James inconjunction with the Helping People with AIDS fund for a raising $3500.00 for there direct client services. According to a posting on the Miss Arkansas website, St. James acknowledge both statewide and local participation.

Crown Season 2007: The annual state impersonator pageant calender is taking shape as qualifiers line up to assume available titles. The announced pageants will be held at the Backstreet/ Discovery Complex and are as follows:

Miss Little Rock, February 4
Miss Discovery, March 11
Miss Capitol City, May 27

The season culiminates with preliminary winners in the Miss Gay Arkansas America coronation later in the year. Pageant officials have also announced that Male interview will be insituted as an optional category in this year program. Our insider sources have whispered there odds favorite to win this year's competition...
and the winner will be, Raven St. James!

Dont Play it again Sam!: The rumored addition of a "piano atmosphere" at The Factory has evaporated in leiu of the on again and off again,(an may I add,very tired) Tuesday night Karaoke fest. Owners had floated the idea that a piano would be added to offset the complications with keeping a Karoke DJ and lack of participation. The piano was to be added to the caberet area and a host would be tickling the ivories for happy hour guest and beyond. Yet,apparently the concept was dismissed in favor of more of the same wannabees warbling there way to their 15 minutes of fame.

Rocky Mountain High: Denver, Colorado has been choose as the site of the Democratic National Convention and receives high praises from the National Stonewall Democratic organization citing the city as a "welcoming environment," for the LGBT community. NSD has chapters around the country, including Little Rock, will provide a national training forum to be held in Las Vegas, NV/ March, Oklahoma City/July, and Manchester, NH/ October.

Apology Go-round: The list of personalities, entertainers, politicians and who-evers who must get on the "Apology-Go-Round continues this week with Isaiah Washington of Gray's Anatomy fame, who said he didn't berate co-star T. R. Knight by calling him the "F" word, (yes, faggot) on the set of the series. Plus he denied his involvement to press at the Golden Globe Award, but later sort of recanted and sent out another lukewarm apology. Meanwhile, Mr. Knight shared his emotions with talk show host, Ellen, stating that her personal journey had also help him with his sexualaity being "lanced" into the seering hollywood spotlight. Subsequently the backlash from this incident has resulted in an online petition with 9,000 signatures calling for Washington's head to be removed from the show. From where we stand, "political incorrectness" and homophobia still loom large in tinsel land.

Fast Fact: Congratulations to the Northwest Arkansas GLBT Community Center for establishing a toll free number to access local services and information. The number is 1.888.391.9222

Get Ready to Get Educated, Tested, Treated and Involved with the National Black HIV/ AIDS Awarness Day, February 7, 2007

Got News or some backtalk, click on the comment icon. All comments are reviewed and published without editing.

Monday, January 15, 2007

King Holiday 2007

In 2005 I had a chance to visit the Lorraine Motel complex in Memphis,TN site of Martin Luther King's final day and assasination. The entire time I spent there was moving and allowed me a chance to use my imagination of how turbulent those times were and the atmosphere that permeated the air. Each exhibit stirred deep emotions and forced me to wrap my mind around what a challege those pursuing civil rights must have endured. As a history buff I was more than enthralled with the musuem's artifacts and attention to detail, including, the actual room King stayed in,video presentations, James Earl Ray's passport and the bullet's fired on that faithfful day. I found it eeriely unsettling as I gazed to the balcony of the hotel from the window sill used methodically by the assassin. Kings legacy of non-violence and committment to unabashed service to mankind are benchmarks that are still revelant today. However, our world is still grappling with war, poverty, immigration, globalization and the enviroment. King's words of compassion, unity and dealing with people based on "character not their skin color" continues to echo. I applaud the advances that have been made overall,even though I can remember just years ago when Gay bars in this state had multiple carding rules and exclusion policies that we now abhor. Yet they exisited, after King and in some areas of the country are still being challenged. The homophobia that is prevelant in the Black community and supported by the church has had devastating affects on individuals living with HIV/ AIDS, gay youth and those in a comming out experience. Correta Scott King aptly acknowledge this issue in various speeches around the nation and implored African American's to rethink their position and learn to embrace those being spured. It would be my hope that as we celebrate his birthday, that we reflect on our committment to empowering others and offering our talents to assist with making the world a better place. I challenge all my readers to share your thoughts on how King's legacy has affected your life and what you will do to help continuing to affirm his mandates for our world.


Friday, January 12, 2007

Back to the Hustle and Flow...

The recovery continues,with four weeks and counting to our full bounce back to fighting mode. Some therapy and R& R have proved instrumental all around in this portion of my makeover. I'm very grateful to all those who have sent their postive vibes and well wishes. All this people power from healthcare workers, personal prayers and concerned individuals have filled my soul with a healing force. Thanks to all! On another personal front, I would like to acknowledge my 13th Anniversary to my partner, James. Our "ying and yang" realtionship has endured much and we hope to have many more. Our motto and mantra for a successful realtionship can be found in the words of William Smith, "Love is not a matter of counting the years, it's making the years count."
And now the Hustle and flow...

Backdated Comments: In case you missed it, we hosted a lively discussion on corporate giving to local organization, especailly needy start-up non-profits such as the NW Arkansas Commuity Center who received a $5000.00 award from Wal-Mart. The discussion took off in a variety of directions sometimes with passions flaring and nostrils glaring. As moderator I read all the comments and realized that I could further step to plate by offering some capacity building information that may not have been accessed by this organization. I don't have to reinvent the wheel, nor do they, there are many portals and sites galore that have practical ideas that can be applied to their situation. Therefore, I plan to commit several posting and personal mentoring if needed by offering some creative methods that have benefited grassroots organizations both small and large. Of course, these will only be suggestions. The real heavy lifting will still be the responsibility of the stakeholders who want to see the organization succeed!

VIGIL 2007: The 14th Annual Vigil, Jaunary 15, 2007, 8:30am, commemerating the life and leagacy of Martin Luther King, will be held at the M.L. Fine Arts Center on the Philander Smith Collge campus. The program is open to the community at large and everyone is encourage to attend.

Gathering of the Minds: The Queer Coalition meeting is still being planned for February in Conway Arkansas. For more information go to: coalition

JCCSI presents the 3rd Annual HIV/ AIDS Conference, February 1-2, 2007 The Theme is Expanding the Circle of Compassion, with workshops, seminars and luncheons at the Peabody Hotel. Click to JCCSI.ORG for agenda and registration information.

National Black HIV/ AIDS Awareness Day: February 7 is the National reconignition of testing, education, and treatment for HIV/ AIDS in the African American community. Locally, plans are being formualted with details to be released. As they become available you will get here it first. The Body Politic will host video, commentary and information highlighting this key event beginning January 22 through February 7, 2007.

FAST FACTS: Can you hear me now? Apparently a phone number listed as the Arkansas AIDS Hotline,(1.800.342.2437)is actually a CDC health info directory, that offers a wealth of health info to wade through via vocal prompts. But, unfortunately has nothing to do with actual direct services available in Arkansas.

We're always listening...tell us about it at

Sunday, January 07, 2007

The 24/7 Catch Up

As reported last post, we are in a recovery mode and expecting a full bounce back in a few weeks. I would like to thank those who shared their concerns and well wishes for our speedy recoup. Being able to post has become apart of my therapy in the overall recovery process, as I've always embraced the mantra, " the show must go on!.."

GLBT Person of the Year. As I understand the voting should be completed and I'm assuming the tabulations will be announce shortly. The assortment of candidates was very interesting and the hightlights from each colorful. However, I'm trying to determine what differentiates this reconigtion from the Gay Pride Awards solicited during GPW 2006, which balloted an array of candidates (persons) and businesses that were deemed noteworthy for their contribution to the community. Meanwhile, apparently using some of the same criteria cited for the "Person" designation. I fully support acknowledging trailblazers and those front line contributors. Because reconizing these indivdiuals is an important factor in organizational survival, community pride, as well as stakeholder interest.However, I suggest that some caution should be taken not to dillute the significance of such an award with too much overlaping or redundancy rendering the entire process moot.

Arkansas Legislature Returns!: The Arkansas legistaure will be returning to the State House for yet another year of back slapping, bill swopping, scene chewing and catfish eating luncheons to boot as they create laws affecting us all. Despite all this ballyhoo, the national Gay Press has hearlded the election of Kathy Webb (Disrict 37) as a bellweather in Arkansas Politics. With such prounoucements as "First Lesbian elected to Arkansas Legislature in Arkansas History..." and " Gay politics gets ally in Arkansas..." Ms. Webb, also nominated as GLBT Person of the Year, seems to be have been rather mumm on the win, exactly what her platform entails (especially any GLBT connection) and how she plans to represent those progressive Hill Crest citizens. We were referred to her website, but it has morphed into an redirected potential candidates info page.

Benefits A-Go-Go Revisted: In December 2006 we noted that it was raining benefits in the GLBT commuity and we hoped that all these efforts would bring significant funds to the coffers of local organizations. However, we have only heard about a $350.00 contriubtuion from the Toys in Babeland benefit held at The Factoryheld Dec.9 Nothing about the "who planned this?" World AIDS Day fundraiser at Easy Street. Also upon checking the Arkansas AIDS Foundation website, there was no posted info on the Bachelor Party(Dec. 2) Compassion Awards (winners or cash) or recap about the big ticket Simply Red Party. If we can't find out how much was raised or donated for those deserving AIDS clients, then how about some pictures at least, so that we know that a good time was had by all!

Editors Note: All dialouge and comments are welcomed. It has been brought to our attention that some comments were unpublished or deleted. As moderator I make every attempt to make sure all comments are attributed to each post. If mistakes were made they have been corrected as quickly as noted. Ocassionally we have had some spam comments and have tried to obviously delete those. We would abhor the thought that any one would feel obligated to "kiss our feet" or bow to our point of view in order to participate here at The Body Politic. In closing, we were mentioned for GLBT Person of the Year but, not his holy eminence.

Thursday, January 04, 2007

This is your life...Deal or No Deal!

Welcome to 2007 gentle readers as The Body Politic updates it's look as well as it's committment to open dialouge, shared viewpoints and aggresive discussion of the issues affecting our communities statewide. Our mission, to be an online destination for the GLBT community and beyond is firm and our focus, to asking the questions, searching for the answers and seeking the accountability required in our future progress is laser driven. Our pledge is steeped in the words of William Jennings Bryant who stated," Destiny is not a matter of chance; but a matter of choice. It is not a thing to be waited for, It is a things to be achieved." We are preparing for an exciting 2007 and we hope you will be willing to take the ride with us!

"This is your life...Deal or No Deal became very apparent to me during the holidays 2006, juxtaposed to my recent total Hip Arthroplasty surgery on December 12, 2006. This procedure was necessary according to my surgeon and I felt that I had sufficiently prepared my self with a pre-opt and post-opt mindset. I constantly reviewed material and even had watched the surgery live on the internet. I was aware that complications were at a minimal and I was confident that I wouldn't be in that slight margin. However, I was rudely awakened on December 23, seriously realizing that my pleasant progress had been impeded and the complications that I thought would elude me, had me gasping for life. I had developed an embolism and in seconds life took on a new complexity. My lifemate summonded the paramedics, ambulance and I found myself in a whirlwind of medical professionals rushing me to the SVI emergency room. Every moment seemed so precious, especially the oxygen flow that I clinged to as we weaved in and out of traffic. The uncertainty of how severe your case is, the range of personal thoughts that race through your head are staggering and meanwhile you start assessing where you are in your relationship with God. It's happened again, life teaching me that nothing is promised and each day is very important for me to make a positive contribution to the universe, no matter what "case" you may open, you must choose to deal or not deal with the consequences that come your way. During my extensive hospitalization, I had many hours to comptemplate and reflect on what's really important to me personally and profesionally. In the quiet darkness of my room, I embraced the thoughts that" God never gives you to much to bear..." I will never forget New Years Eve 2006 as James and I laid next to each other watching the TV coverage of the world celebrations of 2007 realizing that it's not about balloons, dropping balls or coffetti but rather the quality of life your share with the one you love and the life you share each and every day.