Chapter Leader YouTube

 In the video below, check out Chapter Leader Blaine M Leal's YouTube Video, which is a compilation of rapper Azealia Banks being funny/positive. Who knew, this oft-written-about artist actually has a wonderful sense of humor and unmatched talent and ability. Not only that, but as an outspoken LGBTQ advocate and bisexual person herself, Azealia is well-worth a mention on GayTulare.com. WATCHWATCHWATCH!

 

Is Fox Trumping Up Trump?

Fox News Seems Keen to Flatter and Distract

A couple weeks ago, while browsing TV channels, I thought I had discovered a great, trustworthy television news network, and one that I had never come across before. It featured interesting arguments with skilled newscasters, not to mention the subtle lighting -- or so I thought. About 36 hours later, I heard something on my 'new favorite network' that sounded incorrect, based on a piece I had previously read. I decided to fact-check my sources and searched ‘RT News’ online, only to discover that RT just-so-happens to be Russia’s state media.

I had been duped, and that got me thinking. Thinking not only about Russian media, and potential Russian influence, but also about the most popular network on cable in this country: Fox News. My misadventures with news-media continued as I visited 'FoxNews.com', where I discovered an article about my current region of Seattle, Washington, which was simultaneously insulting and intriguing. 

On the article in question, Fox News candidly refers to Seattle as 'smug' with bad public transportation (neither of which have I found to be true as a resident; ie, Link Light Rail; Rapid Buses; Streetcars; The Sounder Communter Rail). This article strikes me as lacking the relevance or objectivity to be considered well-reviewed news. Whereas Russian 'RT News' is at least explicitly state-run, in contrast Fox News emphasizes a 'no-spin' philosophy.

In addition to writing seemingly random and bizarre content like the one about Seattle, Fox News also seems to hand-pick which pieces of actual news to report on. While they seem absolutely googly-eyed over President Trump, they also seem conspicuously absent when Trump does anything unsavory or politically damaging.

Take, for instance, Trump’s recent insulting of Lebron James, a venerable and GOAT-style, great American athlete. This would seem perfect fodder for Fox News Network (FNN). However, according to their website, they seem relatively disinterested. This leads one to question whether or not this is politically-motivated, as Lebron enjoys great support from the state of Ohio, which could make Trump's comments politically damaging.

While Fox seemingly ignores unsavory Trump stories, they also consistently cover his rallies (and Tweets, and call-in interviews, etc), even though they are questionably news-worthy, extremely long and often rambling in content.

Without a minute-by-minute fact-check, the Fox News audience is left to decode a President who refers to the “hundreds” of US Senators on Capitol Hill, among other inaccuracies voiced at  a recent Pennsylvania rally. This creates a problem, as fact and fiction collide, live for audiences of millions. 

When I realized that I had been consuming news authorized by Vladimir Putin, I stopped immediately. However, at least RT News is obviously run by the Russian government. Fox News, with its motto of "Real News. Real Honest Opinion." does just the opposite, by portraying a verdant image while seemingly trumping up the President of the United States.

BML

Would He, Or Wouldn't He?

President Trump Apparently Uplifts the Kremlin at US' Expense

Over the past two years or so, we have been subject to a President-elect and now President who erodes our confidence in our institutions, at least when they are run by a former reality star. In a recent press conference, when asked if the Russians are actively interfering in our elections, Donald Trump said what most of us are thinking: "No, thank you." But alas, the Trump Administration is here to stay (for now), and the LGBTQ Community, plus all of Tulare and the United States, are jeopardized by a seemingly misguided President.

President Trump may not want to comment on Russian intereference, but he is thereby ignoring ample evidence to the contrary. In particular, the countless intelligence agencies of our country act as a chorus of support for this notion. The recent meeting in Helsinki between Putin and Trump showed many of us that our Commander-in-Chief is not vigilant, let alone deterrant, of Russia, opening us up to bad actors.

This matters to Tulare organizations like this LGBT Organization, especially because Tulare's Rep. Devin Nunes has created numerous documents and memos that support the agenda of the President in this matter. Tulare's interests are contringent upon the success of the federal government, just like everywhere in our country, and Tulare needs attentive electeds, like any city.

The LGBTQ Community is also watching the Russia investigation closely, but for different reasons. In this community, folks are curious whether or not the current administration will be held to account for their transgressions and allegations. This, rather than allowing them to apparently create distractions and inflict harm on minority communities, such as through the failed 'Transgender Ban' in the military. 

As a result of this urgency and relevance to communities, all our collective jaws dropped when the President of the United States went on-air to distinguish between "would" and "wouldn't". Clearly, this administration was reluctant to admit there was even a problem, as Trump tweeted and made comments supporting his press conference with Putin, during which he made it clear who he trusted and whose advice he was willing to believe. Hence, the President gave frustrated and impeachment-minded citizens yet another reason -- if not treason.

 

Blaine M.L.

Devin Nunes Vs Andrew Janz

Rep. Devin Nunes Faces Strong Challenger in Andrew Janz

by Blaine M. Leal

 

               In the upcoming November election, for Tulare’s House of Rep's 22nd District, Devin Nunes -- the incumbent Republican -- faces a closer-than-usual race against the Democratic candidate: Andrew Janz. On one side, Rep. Nunes has represented South Fresno, Visalia and Tulare since 2003, with an internationally-known persona; Challenger Andrew Janz, a Democrat, offers a totally different but a more compelling and impressive professional resume and leadership portfolio.

               Representative Devin Nunes is a larger-than-life figure, both known anecdotally, as well as in his social media and news-show presence. A quick glance at his Twitter page, for instance, shows him in-action on various Fox News (good for corporate profits, does nothing about the pot-holes) programs and other television and radio shows -- thanks, Dev. Rarely does he reference the Central Valley, let alone his hometown of Tulare (Go Tribe?). In this regard, Rep. Nunes appears disconnected, or at least very distant, from his constituents in the city of Tulare.

               Andrew Janz, on the other hand, indicates on social media that he is focued on and cares about Tulare and is invested in the region's success, at least enough to address these issues publicly. On the Janz Campaign Instagram, for example, numerous posts reference the business development and environmental health of Tulare, important issues for potential voters, in the opinion of this Chapter Leader.

               Since Donald Trump took office, Rep. Devin Nunes has caused well-publicized rifts within the House Intelligence Committee because, according to his Democratic counterpart on the Committee, Adam Schiff, Nunes has breached protocol and ignored his colleagues, showing that the current representative seems preoccupied with the Trump-Russia issue. His dealing with the Nunes Memo, taking place within shady circumstances in the White House garden, further illustrates his many distractions. 

               In contrast the Janz website outlines about twenty (yes folks, two-zero) specific issues and how he plans to address them. In them, he takes the EPA to task for water quality and delivery, and he emphasizes his support of the LGBTQ Community: “I will fight any attack on same-sex marriage and…bills that threaten the dignity and safety of transgender Americans," in addition to promising to protect Dreamers.

                Moreover, Ballotopedia indicates that Nunes’ campaign received over $1.3 million, much more than the $278,000 that Janz received through June, showing that Nunes has a clear advantage, if only money-wise. 

Tulare Loses Jontel Reedom, Who Won On The Football Field -- and In Our Hearts

Jontell Reedom was a brother, a son, a teammate and, to this author, a fellow graduate of Tulare high schools, Class of 2009. As such, this author shares the grief of this tragic loss with the loved ones of Mr. Reedom. 

To move forward productively, we can learn necessary lessons from this tragic incident, while offering support where immediately needed. To remember Jontell properly, we ought to support loved ones, promote mental health awareness and properly investigate the circumstances surrounding his passing.

As our community has navigated this difficult time, it has become clear that Mr. Reedom was a beloved community member. He was a football star in high school, where he was recruited by top universities like USC, among others. He was also an attendee of Tulare schools from an early age, according to former classmates. Jontell is survived by siblings, who are currently gathering donations on GoFundMe.com (https://www.gofundme.com/burial-expense-for-jontell-reedom) for funeral and hospital expenses. 

In the wake of this tragedy, family and friends of Jontell Reedom have asked that mental health awareness be increased and prioritized. Under the slogan, 'Treat the ill, not kill the ill', they have asked for 24-hour treatment facilities and increased counseling services in general. This is their chosen legacy, and government and non-profit organizations have the impetus and responsibility to follow Mr Reedom's example: to catch the pass from his loved ones, and run far with it.

Lastly, we must call upon the proper supervising authorities to examine the circumstances surrounding his death. In doing so, the proper designees would allow the people of Tulare, and Jontell Reedom's family in particular, to receive proper clarity and closure. As a professional in the field of criminal justice, this author recognizes the importance of open and accountable processes. Without a preconceived outcome determined, an unbiased investigation is a route to understanding in this heretofore confusing and saddening situation.

Jontell Reedom will be remembered forever as a son, brother, teammate, classmate. His smile reverberates across social media today, as an expression of a young man's love and joy. The grief and loss that we feel can spur us to action in order to remember him properly. LGBT Tulare offers its deepest condolences to the family of Mr. Jontell Reedom.

 

 

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