Candidate in PA state House race outed as … straight?

From the Dept of You Can’t Make This Stuff Up:

It’s happened so often that it’s now a cultural cliche: the gay politician pretending to be straight. In most parts of the nation, homosexuality or bisexuality is a clear electoral liability.

Not in Center City’s 182d state House district. There, it’s a badge of honor.

Veteran Rep. Babette Josephs (D., Phila.) last Thursday accused her primary opponent, Gregg Kravitz, of pretending to be bisexual in order to pander to lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender voters, a powerful bloc in the district.

“I outed him as a straight person,” Josephs said during a fund-raiser at the Black Sheep Pub & Restaurant, as some in the audience gasped or laughed, “and now he goes around telling people, quote, ‘I swing both ways.’ That’s quite a respectful way to talk about sexuality. This guy’s a gem.”

Kravitz, 29, said that he is sexually attracted to both men and women and called Josephs’ comments offensive.

“That kind of taunting is going to make it more difficult for closeted members of the LGBT community to be comfortable with themselves,” Kravitz said. “It’s damaging.”


Josephs, 70, first elected in 1984, has the endorsement of the Liberty City Democrats, the preeminent LGBT political organization in the city. A blunt-talking liberal, she worked to block passage of a constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage and to add sexual orientation to the state’s hate-crimes law.

In an interview, Josephs said she stood by her comments about Kravitz. She said her opponent told her he was gay, then showed up at a campaign event with a woman who introduced herself as his girlfriend. On the trail, Kravitz has described himself as a “proud member of the LGBT community,” and he discussed his bisexual orientation while pitching Liberty City for its endorsement.

“He’s said so many things to so many different people that I am puzzled,” said Josephs, a widow. The issue is Kravitz’s credibility, she said, adding that she did not like identity politics.

“My sexuality is not a qualification for office,” Kravitz said. “I bring it up only in the context that it’s important for the LGBT community to have a seat at the legislative table.” He said that it would be good for “right-wing” lawmakers in the capital to work with an openly bisexual colleague.

Kravitz denied that he had ever talked to Josephs about his sexuality, and said he did not recall telling people that he “swings both ways.”

LOL. Is there ever a dull moment in Philadelphia politics? ;)

And if you find that off the wall, wait til you read this:

Three bisexual men are suing a national gay-athletic organization, saying they were discriminated against during the Gay Softball World Series held in the Seattle area two years ago.

The three Bay Area men say the North American Gay Amateur Athletic Alliance in essence deemed them not gay enough to participate in the series.

The lawsuit filed Tuesday in U.S. District Court in Seattle accuses the alliance of violating Washington state laws barring discrimination. The alliance organizes the annual Gay Softball World Series.

Beth Allen, the alliance’s attorney, said the lawsuit is unwarranted and that the three plaintiffs “were not discriminated against in any unlawful manner.”

In any case, Allen said, the alliance is a private organization and, as such, can determine its membership based on its goals.

Whether the alliance is public or private will likely have to be determined in court, since the plaintiffs characterize the alliance as a “public accommodation” that’s open to the public and uses public softball fields.

The three plaintiffs — Steven Apilado, LaRon Charles and Jon Russ — played on a team called D2 that qualified for the 2008 Gay Softball World Series, which is organized by the alliance.

The alliance’s rules say that each World Series team can have no more than two heterosexual players. According to the lawsuit, a competing team accused D2 of violating that rule.

Each of the three plaintiffs was called into a conference room in front of more than 25 people, and was asked “personal and intrusive questions” about his sexual attractions and desires, purportedly to determine if the player was heterosexual or gay, the lawsuit alleges. The alliance has no category or definition for bisexual or transgender people in its rules, the plaintiff’s attorney said.

At one point during the proceedings, the lawsuit alleges, one of the plaintiffs was told: “This is the Gay World Series, not the Bisexual World Series.”

The alliance ruled the three men were “nongay,” stripped D2 of its second-place finish and recommended that the three players be suspended from participating in the World Series for a year, according to the suit.

You can read the full complaint/lawsuit here.

The short and long versions of Obama’s Wall Street “reform” speech

Short version: You Wall Street guys are a bunch of greedy a**holes, but I could use your help.

Long version: Transcript.

The video:

Visit for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Heritage’s Foundry blog has a good analysis of the President’s claims in his speech here.

Related reading:

Tea Party rallies much less violent than anti-war protests?

You betcha. In fact, the ‘violence’ at Tea Parties is pretty much non-existent in comparison:

“Tea party” activists successfully lobbied security officials in Raleigh, N.C., last Thursday to reverse a ban on carrying full-sized flagpoles and signs at a tax day rally. Antiwar protesters, however, argue that they’re often not afforded such luxuries.

Do tea party activists get preferential treatment from law enforcement officials? They have been able to carry guns to anti-Obama rallies, critics note, suggesting that there is a double standard.

Parade permitting rules vary widely from town to town and city to city, with the Supreme Court giving law enforcement broad authority to uphold public safety.

To be sure, permitting rules and police preparedness are often developed based on past behavior at various kinds of protests. Many go back to the 1960s and 1970s when violent rallies erupted over the Vietnam War. Such protests sprung up again during the presidency of George W. Bush, when protesters clashed with police in New York City and elsewhere during large-scale demonstrations against the Middle East wars. With tea party rallies so far proving more orderly, police have given them more latitude.


Alarm around tea party protests cropped up last year when tea partiers began showing up armed. One much-publicized incident involved a man who carried a high-powered rifle to an anti-Obama rally close to where the president was speaking in Phoenix. The man was not breaking any laws, and the Secret Service said Obama was never in danger.

Newsbusters’ Candance Moore responds (via Memeorandum):

This flies directly in the face of Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) comparing TEA parties to California in the 1970s – and that of MSNBC’s Keith Olbermann comparing them to Selma during the fight for minority civil rights.

No matter how much prominent liberals talk about rampant violence, the facts on the ground tell a different story, and reporters end up leaving with rather dull footage – no police clashes, no tear gas, no images of people being carted away in handcuffs.

In fact, the narrative of violence was such a dud on Tax Day, the Huffington Post’s coverage of the “most outrageous” images became a small collection of homemade signs.

Security officials in North Carolina were unconvinced by the left’s hysteria, and on the morning of April 15, the state rescinded its ban on flag poles. Raleigh’s News and Observer reported on the decision:

The little-known restriction applied not just to flag poles, but to any posts attached to signs or banners and was out of a concern that the metal, plastic or woods posts could be used as weapons.

But there had been no prior instances of violence, and was questioned this week in advance of a Tax Day tea party demonstration being held at 5 p.m. on the State Capitol grounds.

So comfortable are various police departments with TEA party rallies that some are allowed to bring guns as an expression of Second Amendment rights.

Left wing protests, on the other hand:

ST. PAUL — Here in the land of “Minnesota nice,” the specter of protesters flinging rocks at cops, and slapping or spitting on elderly delegates this week has many locals in this traditionally liberal town gritting their teeth and tossing their progressive views out the window.

“I’m a Democrat through and through, and I’m about as liberal as you can get,” grumbled Alex Seasly, a construction worker who was grabbing a quick lunch down the road from the Ramsey County jail. “But I want to shove a hockey stick …well, you know.”

He added: “It’s an embarrassment for the city. We don’t treat visitors like that, unless they’re on the ice.”

The jail is where bail hearings began Tuesday for more than 280 protesters arrested in Monday’s unexpectedly violent protests here at the Republican National Convention.

Nearly 10,000 anti-war protesters arrived at the steps of the Capitol building, eager to voice their complaints on everything from the White House to the economy, and tout the country’s need to embrace all things green and organic. (See arrest video below.)

But the fight had been brewing for days: local police raiding protester homes days earlier, in an effort to make a preemptive strike on potential violence; activists, claiming their rights were….

…violated, circulated videos online of terrified young people being handcuffed, and ordered to lie flat on the floor by police in SWAT-like uniforms.

Monday started out peacefully enough, a relief to many. But as the afternoon wore on, small groups peeled off from the main rally, and that’s when things started to go bad. Road flares were thrown into garbage dumpsters, and then the fiery receptacles were pushed into position to to block traffic.

Shop windows were busted. So were police car windows. Protesters threw rocks, bottles, even garbage at the thickening rows of police in riot gear.

One group cornered members of the Connecticut Republican delegation as they were walking to a security check-point to enter the Xcel Energy Center.

“They linked arms and tried to prevent us from going in,” said Heath Fahle, the state party’s executive director. “They were pushing and shoving, and we were pushing back, just trying to get by.”

He added: “They were grabbing at purses, at credentials, spitting on the delegates.”

One protester wrestled with 83-year-old Fred Biebel and stole his credentials. Another spit on Lila Healy, the mother of the state’s GOP party chairman, and hit her in the face.

When former U.S. Rep. Rob Simmons, who used to work for the CIA, stepped in front to protect her from the crowd, a bottle full of water and bleach was thrown in his face.

And here I thought being “anti-war” meant one was “pro-peace.” My mistake …

Related: Black conservative Lloyd Marcus busts another liberal media myth about Tea Partiers.