So, you've lived your whole gay life thinking that God hates you. You've suffered through no small amount of self-contempt, self-flagellation and self-denial because you are a homo. You've stayed away from church because every televangelist on earth raises millions of dollars based on the fact that God hates you, and why subject yourself to that?
How wrong you've been. As it turns out, the Bible doesn't instruct Christians to hate people like you. And that's not just us talking.
The Orlando/Central Florida chapter of Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays (PFLAG) has taken up the issue, and they found an actual man of the cloth — Rev. Bryan Fulwider — to take a close look at the Bible for any indication that God hates fags. Fulwider — who teaches a course called "What Does the Bible Actually Say About Homosexuality?" — concludes that there is no indictment of Maryhood contained in the scripture, so there.
Come hear it for yourself 7:30 p.m. April 18 (again, super-sorry about the short notice) at the First United Methodist Church, 142 E. Jackson St., downtown Orlando. Then cheer up a little, OK?
Finally, Florida tops the list in something other than stupid college basketball and old people with STDs: We're No. 2 in increases in carbon dioxide pollution!
We just finished reading a report from the Environment Florida Research & Policy Center (OK, we actually just read the press release; the damn report is like 50 pages long) and discovered that the Sunshine State is doing way more than its share to ruin the planet. Right here in Florida, pollution that causes global warming went up 37 percent between 1990 and 2004. And what's cool about that is that when the ice caps melt and the sea level rises, Orlando is going to be on the coast. Surf's up!
Among the report's findings: Florida ranked No. 1 in carbon dioxide increases from natural gas—fired power plants, and No. 2 for the largest increase in carbon dioxide emissions from cars. Read more at www.environmentflorida.org.
So stop driving and turn off your air conditioners.
To paraphrase Garrison Keillor (which is so totally uncool that it's probably cool), it was a quiet week at Lake Eola, our hometown battleground between the cops and the hippies.
After the previous week's arrest of Food Not Bombs guy Eric Montanez for violating the city's group-feeding ordinance, we expected cops in riot gear raining truncheon blows on the scrofulous noggins of hippies. Didn't happen. In fact, there wasn't a cop to be seen, unless the hot chicks drinking pinot at the wine bar across the street were actually undercover operatives. Sneaky.
RATE THE PROTEST!
Who: Animal Rights Foundation of Florida
When: April 13 in front of United Trophy at 610 N. Orange Ave.
Scene: Four cops on bikes patiently waited for rowdy protesters to arrive after being tipped off “through intelligence.” Two protesters finally arrived 20 minutes late to hold up a large banner protesting animal performances at Flea World in Sanford. (The owners of Flea World also own United Trophy.) This weekly 2-year-old protest, from the looks of it, hasn’t gained much momentum and has hardly been a catalyst for change, though reportedly the shop’s owner on occasion comes out and spars with the duo. Bonus points for attracting four cops, however.
OUR RATING: 2 (out of 10)
ACLU Central Chapter prez George Crossley told us the cops paid a visit to the feeding before we got there, but skedaddled when they realized they were being videotaped. He also mentioned that the ACLU was planning to file an injunction to make sure no one else gets arrested for feeding the homeless until a lawsuit challenging the city's ordinance is settled, but as of press time that hadn't happened.
It sucks to be Doug Guetzloe these days. Not only is he facing felony perjury charges, a slew of bad press and cancer, but he's a few denied appeals away from serving 60 days in the county slammer after being convicted of campaign-related misdemeanors last year.
And now this: Guetzloe's lawsuit against three people who had the audacity to record his radio show, which no one listens to anyway, was laughed out of federal court April 9.
In January 2006, Guetzloe accused a man on air of "cruising" trailer parks to pick up little boys. That man, Richard Mask, and two of his friends made a recording of the show, passed it along to local media, then filed a defamation suit against Guetzloe. Guetzloe retaliated by suing the men for infringing on his show's copyright.
But Judge Anne Conway wasn't buying it. Conway summed up Guetzloe's argument thusly: "That notion defies reason and common sense." Since Mask needed the tape to bring his slander suit, Conway argued that it made no sense to allow Guetzloe to essentially shut off the only proof he'd have. "With apologies to Dickens," she wrote, "the law cannot be that much of an ass."
No, but Guetzloe can. No, but Guetzloe can.
This week's report by Jeffrey C. Billman, Billy Manes, Deanna Sheffield and Bob Whitby.firstname.lastname@example.org