Last week Rabbi Noson Leiter, head of the Rockland County-based Orthodox Jewish advocacy group Torah Jews for Decency, said that Superstorm Sandy was God’s response to same-sex marriage in New York. This crackpot said: “The Lord could punish particular areas with a flood, and if we look at the same-gender marriage recognition movement that’s occurring, that certainly is a message for us to learn.”
On Monday, Gov. Andrew Cuomo issued a statement in response to the rabbi’s letter: “The comments made by Rabbi Noson Leiter that sought to link the devastation caused by Hurricane Sandy to our state’s embrace of marriage equality are as offensive as they are ignorant.
“This kind of hateful rhetoric has no place in our public discourse, and is particularly distasteful in times of tragedy. Our state is proud to offer equal rights to all our citizens, and we will never tolerate the use of a tragedy like Hurricane Sandy to promote a divisive and bigoted agenda. I call on Rabbi Leiter to apologize immediately for his hurtful comments.”
Thank you, Gov. Cuomo, who continues to show leadership in our state and is one of few politicians who truly stands by what he believes. *
Tuesday is the all-important day that the United States continues on a positive path toward recovery… or turns the clock back on itself 40 years. Please vote… unless you’re making the uninformed choice.
If you are a young person, a gay, a woman, a minority, earn less than $250,000 a year or have been impacted by severe weather anywhere anytime, there really is only one candidate. If he’s not yours, please… just stay home and keep watching Fox News. *
At last! The song I’ve been waiting for: The fourth single from my sweet, adorable, hunky pal Matt Zarley’s current album Change Begins With Me is the beautiful power ballad title track. Written by Zarley, Andy Zulla, & Chris Curtis, and produced by Matt’s long-time collaborator, the Grammy-winning Zulla, “Change Begins With Me” is a wildly intense declaration of self acceptance, responsibility and ultimately, forgiveness.
Matt sings, “I can see it now, it’s all so clear, all my answers were always here/I’ve turned a new page, I can see it now… If I want my life to change, the change begins with me.”
And I tell you what. A year ago, when I first heard this soaring anthem, it stood by my side time and again as I weathered my own divorce. Watching the video for the first time last night, I couldn’t help but tear up again. Every time that thunderous bridge and final chorus start scraping the clouds, I feel the chills coming on. And I feel change, brothers and sisters.
In the video clip below, Zarley invited fans to become part of the message. Over the past few months, dozens submitted home movies with messages of change, which are featured in the clip’s finale. The vid was directed by Robert Bottoms and also features the Broadway Inspirational Voices singing the requisite gospel background chorus.
By Karen Mitchell, exclusive for The Smoking Nun
The Fall TV show is just around the corner, and with that comes a modicum of exciting new shows. Of course, a lot of them are destined to fail within the first few episodes, leaving many bummed as potential new favorites end up on the chopping block (Hello, Playboy Club). Because of DVRs and online viewing today, so many don’t even discover new series until the end of the first season—f they last that long.
Following are six of the hottest TV shows debuting this fall that everyone should give an opportunity to flourish on the TV airwaves…
The Mindy Project
Mindy Kailing from the office stars in this new comedy about romance. Kailing is an OB/GYN who is constantly searching for her perfect man. The Mindy Project will premiere on Fox, Tuesday, September 25. The pilot episode has been available as a free download since late August. Kailing will make this a terrific series as long as she follows up her understated but always believable performance on The Office.
The Mob Doctor
Premiering on Fox this past Monday, September 17th, The Mob Doctor is an American drama series. Jordana Spiro stars as Grace Devlin, a doctor who cannot escape the hold that the greasy mob has on her family. She must navigate through the ups and downs—mostly downs—while focusing on her duties as a serious MD.
Starring Jesse Spencer from House, along with Taylor Kinney. This show follows a group of firefighters as they struggle with the recent death of one of their own. Count on lots of red hot drama and excitement from this show that plays like a big-screen movie. Chicago Fire airs Wednesdays at 10 p.m., on NBC.
Ann Heche returns to TV in Save Me, a show about a woman with an unusual gift. After a near death experience, she hears the voice of God and feels the need to help Him communicate with others. Sounds hokey, but early buzz is quite positive. The series launches in mid-fall on NBC.
Matthew Perry is still looking for the perfect post-Friends vehicle. His turn as a skeptical sportscaster who loses his wife in a car accident leads him to group therapy to try and heal. The comedy’s pilot has been available online for weeks, while the show had its premiere Tuesday, September 11.
The New Normal
Starring The Hangover’s Justin Bartha and a hilarious Ellen Barkin, this modern-day comedy centers around a woman in need of money who agrees to be a surrogate for a gay couple desperate for a child. Barkin stars as the woman’s bigoted grandmother and the woman’s daughter adds a playful touch to the mix. The New Normal is on NBC at 9:30 p.m. Tuesdays. (Typical of any show that tries to move society forward, Normal has been banned in Utah, before it even launched, so expect advertising controversy.) *
Karen Mitchell writes about television, personal finance & more at http://lifeinsurancequotes.org.
When even members of the Republican party back away from support of contender Mitt Romney, you know this guy is the ultimate loser. Former Florida Republican Governor Charlie Crist has come out with a strong endorsement for Barack Obama. In an opinion piece for the Tampa Bay Times, he speaks out in favor of the current President, as Gawker reports.
“I’m confident President Barack Obama is the right leader for our state and the nation,” Crist writes. “I applaud and share his vision of a future built by a strong and confident middle class in an economy that gives us the opportunity to reap prosperity through hard work and personal responsibility. It is a vision of the future proven right by our history.”
Crist currently has no party affiliation, after shaking his hands clean of the Republican party in 2010. He acknowledges that the current party “has failed to demonstrate the kind of leadership or seriousness voters deserve.”
With a G.O.P. platform that continues to pitch so far to the extreme right on issues essential to women, immigrants, seniors, students and gays, I’m amazed anyone in the United States truly believes Romney is going to set the economy straight and continue to move social issues into the 21st Century. Hmm, I suppose that just leaves embittered old white guys, right? *
NBC’s The New Normal, which launches Sept. 11, may be carrying the notion of a “post-modern family” to the extreme. According to NBC, “These days, families come in all forms: single dads, double moms, sperm donors, egg donors, one-night-stand donors… It’s 2012 and anything goes.” Oh, my god, that’s just hyssssterical!
Bryan & David are a Los Angeles gay couple who are just pining away for a baby. They hook up with Goldie, “a Midwestern waitress & single mother looking to escape her dead-end life,” who moves to L.A. with her precocious 8-year-old daughter to become their surrogate.
Add in Emmy-winning developer Ryan Murphy (Glee, Nip/Tuck) and a cast the includes Justin Bartha (The Hangover I & II), Andrew Rannells (Broadway’s The Book of Mormon) and Emmy and Tony Award winning actor Ellen Barkin.
You know what? It sounds dreadful. First, the fact that a gay couple can’t survive without raising a kid… irritating. Second, any show that includes a”precocious 8-year-old” is an instant turn-off. Pushing boundaries is one thing. Silly, opportunistic ideas for a Modern Family rip-off are quite another.
Then again, the fact that “One Million Moms” has targeted the show for attack… I wouldn’t mind being wrong, and seeing it turn into a gargantuan hit, just to spite the homophobic organization. *