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Tag Archives: Gay

An Orthodox Gay First?

Orthodox-ordained Rabbi Steve Greenberg presiding at same-sex wedding of Yoni Bock and Ron Kaplan in Washington, DC synagogue, 10 November 2011 (photo: Roee Ruttenberg)

Orthodox-ordained Rabbi Steve Greenberg presiding at same-sex wedding of Yoni Bock and Ron Kaplan in Washington, DC synagogue, 10 November 2011 (photo: Roee Ruttenberg)

Yasher Koach to chatanim (חתנים or grooms) Yoni Bock and Ron Kaplan!

Standing in matching kittle’s (קיטלנים or traditionally white linen robes that Ashkenazim are known to be buried in after wearing it to their wedding as well as annually on Yom Kippur to signify purity, holiness and new beginnings) and orange kippah’s (כִּפוֹת or platter-shaped head caps worn for respect) the two men stood under the chupah (a symbol of the home that the couple will build together) in Washington D.C. holding hands.

I understand from the blogsphere that many in the Orthodox tradition are dismissing the wedding as both of the grooms are men. Although no one has asked me my opinion on the matter here it is: of course it counts. The grooms were married in Washington D.C. by Rabbi Steven Greenberg, author of the 2004 groundbreaking book Wrestling with God & Men: Homosexuality in the Jewish Tradition. 

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Posted by on November 15, 2011 in Queer Jewish Leaders

 

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Top 10 LGBT Websites and Blogs

rosie says we can blog itmy new flatmate works in pr and marketing and already knows that i am a geek with social media stats. in his natural kindness he sent me this interesting list of the most popular LGBT websites and blogs. the list was compiled in june 2011 by a group called compete.com in partnership with a media database group called cision. they ranked the sites listed below by unique visitors per month (uvpm).

if you are also a social media geek or if you simply want to know where folks are going to get their lgbt related news and gossip take a look…

  1. Advocate.com 290,315 uvpm
  2. AfterEllen.com 203,924 uvpm
  3. Towleroad 200,477 uvpm
  4. Queerty 196,806 uvpm
  5. AfterElton.com 145,255 uvpm
  6. The Bilerico Project 78,459 uvpm
  7. homorazzi.com 77,342 uvpm
  8. gay.com 71,360 uvpm
  9. Outsports 68,573 uvpm
  10. GayGamer.net 56,550 uvpm
if you’re looking for a blog on how to bake the perfect challah, how to properly observe a jewish holiday, like yom kippur which begins this evening, or how to how to date a homosexual femme jewess, i must confess, that i don’t have a top ten list of bloggers for you based on uvpm stats. i can highly recommend this leading transdenominational jewish website for the most comprehensive jewish information… tell me, friends, do you know where i can find reliable uvpm stats on jewish blogs?
 
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Posted by on October 7, 2011 in Microscope

 

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gays have kids too

During these days between the Jewish New Year and Yom Kippur, Jews are told to reflect on what really matters to us. So here it goes, one thing that really matters to me is continually bringing the stories and realities of everyday LGBT Jewish leaders into the mainstream. Many LGBT folks don’t always have the big life concepts mapped out for them. By the way, when I write “them”, I do mean me as well.

I often look to the experiences of my family to help me navigate this world but a few things don’t always translate. Some translations on expectations and roles get lost on me. Not so much because of discrimination any more, but more often the nuance of difference. I work to find community and friendships with other LGBT Jewish leaders, in part because they model one of the many ways that I might too have a healthy same-sex relationship, how to raise children, how to present the gender identity that works for me, or how to juggle the demands of chosen family versus biological family.

Something else that matters to me is a love of democracy and the drama of politics. So when I saw this ad yesterday, pairing my love of politics with a story that brings a local queer Jewish family into the mainstream – I had to link to it. So in honor of speaking out to what matters to me during the Jewish High Holiday’s as well as embracing October as LGBT History Month please take a look at this 33 second ad featuring our LGBT lives having mainstream visibility. The ad features a gay and Jewish former city supervisor, Bevan Dufty running for mayor of San Francisco, proudly introducing himself in his most important identity role: a father.

Related Stories

  • AutostraddleBevan Dufty Reminds Us Gay Candidates Have Kids Too (link)
  • I Want to be a (Gay) Dad, Celebrating LGB Parents (link)
  • Queer Landia, Gay SF Hopeful features Daughter in New Ad (link)
  • Towlroad, Gay SF Mayoral Hopeful Bevan Dufty Features Daughter (link)
  • The Stir, Gay Candidate for Mayor ‘Exploits’ Kid By Admitting She Exists (link)
  • David Mixner Blog, Impressions (link)
  • Politco, Ben Smith’s Frontiers of Gay Politics (link)
  • Gay Politcs, Bevan Dufty in Someplace New (link)
  • San Francisco Bay Guardian, Bevan Dufty loves MUNI (link)
 
 

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Gay Ugandan refugee finds home in Jewish Bay Area

Avi Rose

Yasher Koach and Todah Rabah to Avi Rose & Jewish Family and Children Services of the East Bay as well as all of those that were involved.

Do you remember when a few Americans got involved in launching a political movement to eliminate homosexuality in Uganda? How about when The Rachel Maddow Show covered this anti-gay hysteria with the catchy title, “Uganda Be Kidding Me“? Do you remember learning about the murder of David Kato after a Ugandan media outlet published his name and photograph along with 99 additional Ugandan leaders with the corresponding title, “Top 100 Homosexuals – Hang Them”? (read more)

It was within this mishigas that Bay Area LGBT Jewish community leader, Avi Rose with Jewish Family and Children’s Services of the East Bay (JFCS) began to take action. Now, Danny Dyson, a Ugandan refugee who gained asylum status based on all of this anti-gay persecution, is living here in the Bay Area.

What’s next? Gay refugees settling in our community from Iran? Yes! I understand more LGBT folks will be joining us from both Iran and Uganda soon thanks again to Avi Rose, JFCS, a few philanthropists and the Direction of Neil Grungras with the Organization for Refuge Asylum and Migration (ORAM). These amazing leaders and advocates truly help make our Jewish community shine…

 
 

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Celebrating life, legacy and 5 foot tall lesbians

Each time I walk by one of the many billboards across town proudly showcasing a rather butch-presenting 5′ tall Gertrude Stein, I have a little self-loving-pride moment. I have a feeling that I am not the only 5’3″ Jewish woman who finds the sight similarly validating. But sadly, this spectacular pride-filled San Francisco Summer of Stein will come to a close at both the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA) and the Contemporary Jewish Museum (CJM) on September 6 (event listing)… So, folks, go to the exhibitions soon or you will miss it… Need a little nudge to get there? Take a look at a few shots of folks in our community who have already enjoyed a little Parisian summer time fun…

Two museums, two Gertrude Stein related institutions, one Evening in Gay Paris an event which invited the LGBT community to our evocation of 1920's Paris. These photobooth photos seen below are on a backdrop of wallpaper from the home that Gertrude Stein and Alice B. Toklas shared.

Two museums, two Gertrude Stein related institutions, one Evening in Gay Paris an event which invited the LGBT community to our evocation of 1920's Paris. These photobooth photos seen below are on a backdrop of wallpaper from the home that Gertrude Stein and Alice B. Toklas shared.

Howard Steiermann enjoying the photoboothTwo museums, two Gertrude Stein related institutions, one Evening in Gay Paris an event which invited the LGBT community to our evocation of 1920's Paris. These photobooth photos seen below are on a backdrop of wallpaper from the home that Gertrude Stein and Alice B. Toklas shared.

Don’t let the summer go by without experiencing how the City of San Francisco is celebrating the life, legacy and lesbianism of two Jewish icons, Gertrude Stein and Alice B. Toklas on view now through Sept. 6 (learn more). Continue to get to know who makes up this incredible queer Jewish community by tagging yourself and your friends in these and more of the photos from the summer on facebook.

 
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Posted by on August 24, 2011 in Jewish Bay Area

 

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where is harel skaat staying when he visits san francisco?

After overhearing the music of Harel Skaat flooding through my office wall all afternoon my colleague in the office next door poked his head into my office to tell me, “his music is great…” I smiled and asked if he would join me at his concert in Palo Alto (details) but before he responded he paused giving me a rare and almost-shy-smile. He then quickly asked, “do you know if he or his boyfriend need a nice place to stay in the Castro while they are in town? I have a place in the Castro…”

So of course, I wanted to see why such a fine gentleman would be so courteous to offer up his home to a couple of strangers. That is when I learned that the boyfriend of Harel Skaat is the Israeli model, Idan Roll. I stopped wondering and just responded with a smirk….

Idan Roll and Harel Skaat

I don’t know where Idan and Harel are staying (or if they are coming to the Bay Area together) but I do know that all before the age of 30, Harel Skaat has become one of the leading and most sought-after male-vocalists in Israel. His Yemenite and Iraqi Jewish roots formed his distinctive sound within a particular genre of pop music and his work in the music industry has received all possible Israeli accolades. He has also received attention in the New York Times (story) not only for his musical talents but his attention to fashion too. Sadly, Harel’s visit to the Bay will be short this time with limited performances but you can keep track of the whereabouts of this gay israeli musical icon on his website (link).

 
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Posted by on August 22, 2011 in Jewish Bay Area

 

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what are you living with? this film provides moments of hope and validation for folks living and thriving with HIV/AIDS. want to see it with friends? i have two tickets left!

Commemorating the 30-year anniversary of the HIV/AIDS epidemic, The HIV Story Project (a non-profit based in   San Francisco) presents the West Coast premiere of Still Around on Friday, June 24th, 2011 as part of Frameline35, San Francisco’s International LGBT Film Festival at the Castro Theatre.

Two of my dates to Still Around, Dr. Donny Inbar and Kevin Johnson

The feature length short film compilation brings together sixteen San Francisco Bay Area filmmakers and fifteen local subjects to tell powerful stories about people living and thriving with HIV/AIDS.Want to see it with me and my friends Donny Inbar and Kevin Johnson on Friday? We have two more tickets available.

 

 

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